On March 2, we are delighted to have a special interview with our journal author-- Prof. Feng Rao, from Zijin School of Geology and Mining, Fuzhou University, Fuzhou, Fujian, China.
This interview is initiated on a Research Article from our journal--Influence of Ca on the mechanical properties and microstructures of slag-fly ash geopolymers. This study presents novel insights into the influence of Ca on geopolymerization and in strengthening geopolymer properties. This work evaluates the role of Ca by observing the behavior of hierarchically calciferous geopolymers under different environments, including air, carbonization, and freezing-thawing cycles. The structural and morphological differences between the geopolymers and the related mechanisms in various environmental conditions are assessed based on compressive strength, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller, X-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infrared spectoscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and scanning electron microscopy measurements. It is found that two kinds of geopolymer gels, calcium silicate hydrate and sodium aluminosilicate hydrate, are formed in the geopolymerization of blast furnace slag and fly ash. Regardless of the specific air, carbonization, or freezing-thawing cycle environment, the former gel dominates the properties in low Ca geopolymers, while the latter gel determines the properties in medium and high Ca geopolymers. Moreover, the carbonization environment enables calciferous geopolymers with higher surface areas and smaller pore sizes. Such adequate pore structures can significantly improve the performance of the geopolymers.
This interview invites the author to focus on the innovation of this research paper, so as to better bring inspiration to scholars in related research fields. At the same time, under the trend of carbon neutrality in the world, Prof. Rao also states what his team has done in strengthening the resource utilization of mineral and metallurgical solid waste and promoting the green development of the mining and metallurgy industry. Finally, as the Editorial Board member of MMM, Prof. Rao also talked about how editors should strictly control the quality of articles, which is highly consistent with the editorial department's principle of high-quality publication.
Biography of the interviewee
Prof. Rao Feng, Zijin School of Geology and Mining, Fuzhou University, Distinguished Professor of Minjiang Scholars. The main research interests are: utilization of solid metallurgical waste resources, surface chemistry and interfacial chemistry of non-metallic mineral flotation, synthesis, and application of clay mineral materials.
Prof. Rao has presided over 6 national scientific research projects, including the General Program of the National Natural Science Foundation of China and the National Key Scientific Research Platform Consolidation and Development Project in Mexico. He has also presided over 6 scientific research projects entrusted by enterprises, and participated in 3 national-level basic scientific research projects, such as the key projects funded by the Natural Science and Engineering Council of Canada as a technical backbone.
Prof. Rao has published more than 80 academic papers, of which 52 have been indexed by SCI, and the papers have been cited more than 1,400 times. 6 patents have been granted and are in the substantive examination stage. In 2018, Prof. Rao was awarded the key scientific research by the Canadian website Advances in Engineering (AIE). Prof. Rao is also active in various social organizations and activities. He is a member of the Mexican Association of Mining and Miners, a first-class national researcher in Mexico, a mining technology consultant in the Lazaro Cardenas Port Economic Development Zone, Michoacán, Mexico, youth committee member of Zhongguancun Green Mine Industry Alliance.
MMM will continue to publish more special interview series. We look forward to building a multi-channel exchange and display platform for all scholars who publish papers with us.
Respectfully Submitted by the Journal Editorial Office
Mineraland Mineral Materials