The impact on the environment of using paint-contaminated grit (PCG) as a partial or full replacement for sand in Portland cement mortar and asphalt concrete mixtures was investigated. The grit waste material originated from abrasive blasting of offshore steel structures. There is a major environmental concern regarding the safe disposal of the spent blasting abrasives that contain paint chips or paint particles and other debris removed from the surface of the steel structures. This work investigated the potential reuse of PCG in Portland cement concrete (PCC) and hot mix asphalt concrete. Several studies were conducted to establish the integrity of the materials containing the recycled grit. These included the chemical and physical characterization of natural sand and PCG, the assay of leaches associated with the grit material for hazardous metal contaminants, such as Cr, Cd and Pb, and the assessment of the mechanical properties of the PCG-substituted mortars by applying special tests (such as Marshall stability and determination of the flow properties) to the PCG-substituted asphalt concrete mixtures. The overall results demonstrated that the potential reuse of PCG in PCC and asphalt concrete mixtures would not pose any environmental threat and could produce several benefits, such as reduced disposal costs, protection of water sources from improper disposal practices and reduced costs in the production of natural aggregates and asphalt cement.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law