The Science Behind Geopolymers

April 2012

The use of centrifugally-applied, cementitious mortar systems have found their niche as a cost-effective and efficient way of pipe rehabilitation. The rehabilitation method has come up with recent exciting advancements such as improved lining material and precision tactics. With the new development and introduction of advanced geopolymers, the industry is now beginning to see the performance and application of the application as tradition cementitious mortar lining systems.

There are two primary geopolymer families, Phosphate based and Aluminosilicate based. Silica, Alumina, and Oxygen atoms are the primary ingredients in an aluminosilicate geopolymer which form its primary "polymer" backbone or chain of covalently bonded atoms. The geopolymers work by having the covalently bound atoms at the surface of the particles displaced by alkali molecules. The attachment and cross-linking create a monolithic structure that is used to repair the pipe.

The process and equipment had made their improvements alongside the materials. A precision - controlled spray application equipment applies the advanced geopolymer through a preset speed. This allows the product to be consistently used to a preset engineered thickness with each pass.

With each passing advancement towards the science of underground technologies, new opportunities are created. IPR has dedicated their research towards creating better solutions for our clients and the underground infrastructure industry.

Learn more: Technical Forum Article

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