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ISSN:- 2349283X

Utilization of Red Mud using Fly Ash for Ground


Kant Pandey
Post Graduate Student
Department of Civil Engineering,
Madan Mohan Malaviya University of
Technology, Gorakhpur(UP), India
Email: pra7237@gmail.com


S.M. Ali Jawaid

Associate Professor
Department of Civil Engineering,
Madan Mohan Malaviya University of
Technology, Gorakhpur(UP), India
Email: smaj@rediffmail.com

ABSTRACT: This paper illustrates the possibility of utilization of the Red Mud waste generated from
HINDALCO (Hindustan Aluminium Company) at Renukoot, Shonbhadra (U.P.) and also utilizing Fly Ash
generated from the coal/lignite based thermal power plants through ground improvement technique,
leading to an effective waste management. In this study samples were prepared by mixing different
percentage of Red Mud with different percentage of soil, with an aim to compare strength gain with Fly
Ash. Red Mud mixed with highly compressible soil and reinforced with Fly Ash may find potential
applications in road and embankment constructions with due regards for its strength characteristics,
durability, longevity and environmental safety.
Keywords: Generation; Utilization; Environmental safety.

performance of Red Mud, Red Mud-soil and Red

Mud-soil-Fly ash fills. The maximum dry density
(MDD) and optimum moisture content (OMC)
obtained by Proctor compaction test becomes
the benchmark for determining the quality of
compaction. The dry density of fill is of primary
importance, as it is the major parameter of
strength and compressibility of the fills.

Red Mud is produced during the process for

alumina production. Depending on the raw
material processed, 12.5 tons of red mud is
generated per ton of alumina produced. In India,
about 4.71million tons/annum of red mud is
produced which is 6.25% of worlds total
generation. It is the insoluble product after
bauxite digestion with sodium hydroxide at
elevated temperature and pressure. It is a
mixture of compounds originally present in the
parent mineral bauxite and of compounds
formed or introduced during the Bayer cycle. It
is disposed as slurry having a solid
concentration in the range of 10-30%, pH in the
range of 10-13 and high ionic strength.

a) Red Mud

The aim of the work is to stabilize the waste

(Red Mud) obtained from alumina plant by
mixing it with soil and fly ash obtained from
thermal power plant, which can subsequently be
utilized for various geotechnical and highway
engineering applications such as filling of
embankments, construction of highways,
replacement of poor subgrade soil etc.

This sample of Red Mud has been obtained from

HINDALCO, Renukoot (U.P.). This Red mud is the
solid waste residue of the digestion of bauxite
ores with caustic soda for alumina (Al2O3)
production. It is a mixture of compounds
originally present in the parent mineral bauxite
and of compounds formed or introduced during
the Bayer cycle.


Red Mud




Fly Ash

The performance of stabilized mixes depends

upon the compaction or densification of the fill,
proper compaction is therefore, critical to the

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ISSN:- 2349283X

Geotechnical engineering properties of the

Red Mud

Fig.1 Red Mud Sample from HINDALCO Plant,

Renukoot, (U.P.)

Grain Size Distribution Curve for Red Mud

Fig.2 Grain size distribution curve

Proctor compaction test of Red Mud

Fig.3 OMC curve of Red Mud

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ISSN:- 2349283X


The soil sample which was collected from

Ravindra Nagar (Dhoos) Kushinagar. The
engineering properties, proctors compaction
test and grain size distribution curve of the soil
Geotechnical Engineering Properties of Soil

Fig.5 Grain size curve for soil


Proctors Compaction Test of Soil

Fig.4 Compaction test curve for soil

Grain Size Distribution Curve of Soil

Fly Ash

The fly ash used in the study was brought from

Tanda Thermal Power Station situated at
Ambedkar Nagar in Uttar Pradesh, which was
available free of cost. Fly Ash is classified as silt
of low compressibility. Fly Ash from
Electrostatic Precipitator (ESP) is continuously
removed to buffer hopers located near ESP by
means of vacuum pumps. From buffer hoppers,
dry fly ash is conveyed to storage silos, from
there it can be unloaded dry to pneumatic tank
trucks or conditioned with water by hydro mix
dust conditioners for discharge to open bed
trucks, Ash to be stored is removed by belt
conveyers to ash storage area. Bottom ash is
continuously collected in wet hoppers, ground
to sand size and periodically transferred to one
of six hydro bins for decanting.
For the present investigation, dry fly ash from
hopper is collected in polythene bags. Fly Ash
can be collected into different categories such as
dry fly ash, bottom fly ah, conditioned fly ash.
Dry fly ash can be collected from different rows
of electrostatic precipitators. Bottom ash is
collected from bottom of the boiler. Conditioned
fly ash is also available in ash mound for use in
landfills and ash building products.
Two classes of fly Ash are defined by ASTM
C618: Class F Fly Ash and Class C Fly Ash. The
main difference between these classes is the

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amount of calcium, silica, alumina, and iron

content in the ash. The chemical property of the
fly ash is highly influenced by the chemical
content of the coal burned. (i.e., anthracite,
bituminous, lignite).The free lime content of fly
ash contribute to self- hardening, fraction of
lime, present as free lime in the form of calcium
oxide or calcium hydroxide, controls selfhardening characteristics of fly ashes.

ISSN:- 2349283X

and the Geotechnical properties

proportion are shown in Table 4.



Geotechnical Engineering Properties of Fly


On the basis of past research (Sharif, 2012) we

found that 3% Fly Ash mixing gives the best
result in soil stabilization therefore we mix 3%
Fly Ash in different percentage of soil and Red
5.1 Stabilization of Red Mud

Proctor compaction test of Fly Ash

Different percentage at which Red Mud was

mixed with soil and its OMC and CBR is given in
Table 5. From the table and graph it is clear that
strength of the mixture is maximum when 30%
Red Mud and 3% is Fly Ash added to the 67 % of
Table 5 Variation of OMC%, MDD and CBR%
with Red Mud Content

Fig.6 Compaction test curve for Fly Ash


Mix Preparations for Stabilization of

Red Mud

The Red Mud is mixed with highly compressible

soil and fly ash in different proportion,
thereafter, best mix has been found on the basis
of Optimum Moisture content and California
bearing ratio test and then to the best mix has
been selected to improve the properties of soil.
The following proportions of mix were prepared

From the above table it is also observed that the

CBR Value for the 11q3 Fly Ash is less than CBR
value of Red Mud, and Dry density value of Red
Mud is higher than Dry density value of the soil.

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Thus these results also shown an indication that

Red Mud can be a best material for Geotechnical
purposes and even in Road construction works.

ISSN:- 2349283X

In order to compare the result obtained when

30% Red Mud, 67% soil and 3% Fly Ash is
mixed maximum CBR of 7.354% is found and
after this when the percentage of Red Mud is
increased the CBR value decreases.
2. Conclusions

Fig 7 Result of Red Mud mixture % and MDD

As evident from fig 7, on increase the percentage
of Red Mud in the mixture of soil and Fly Ash,
leads to increases in dry density because Red
Mud is heavy weight compared to soil and the
particles present in the Red Mud are finer than

With the aim to utilize the Aluminium Plant

industrial waste such as Red Mud from
HINDALCO Pvt. Ltd., Renukoot, Uttar Pradesh
for Utilization as stabilized Material in Road
construction and other engineering application.
Based on the experimental study, it is found that
Red Mud waste may be utilized well in soil
stabilization and other Geotechnical Engineering
projects by mixing Red Mud with Soil and Fly
ash. Thus this method of utilization may resolve
major environmental problem of Disposal of Red
Mud waste Obtained from Aluminium
Based on this experimental study, the following
conclusion may be drawn:
Specific gravity of the red mud is 2.85
which is very high compared to the soil
solids. So the density of red mud will be
more and so the strength is more.

Fig 8 Result of Red Mud mixture% and OMC

As shown figure 8, it is observed that the
Optimum moisture Content of the Red Mud
increases on increasing the percentage of Red
Mud in the mixture of soil and Fly Ash, because
surface area of the sample increases.

From the graph showing particle size

distribution mud indicated grains are fine
and it is well graded. So the soil can be
used as an embankment material, backfill
material etc.
The maximum dry density and optimum
moisture content of the red mud is
1.712gm/cc and 30.5% respectively.
Co-efficient of permeability of red mud is
5.78610-7cm/s which shows that
permeability is very low. Low permeable
materials can be used for construction of
earthen dams, road embankments etc.
The cohesive strength and the angle of
shear resistance obtained from the
triaxial test are 0.125 kg/cm2 and 25.800.
The strength value of the red mud is
higher than the conventional clay

Fig.9 Result of Fly-ash mixture% and CBR

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CBR value of the red mud is 3.368% which

is greater than the 3%, so we can use the
red mud as a road material in village side.
When this Red Mud is used with Fly Ash
and Soil its CBR value increases to 7.354
%, thus this being a good material for
Road sub grade material and soil is well
By seeing all these properties of the red
mud we can utilize the red as
geotechnical material like Backfill
material, road sub-grade material
embankment material. Red mud is
further stabilized to enhance the more
strength with lime, gypsum, etc.
3. Refrences
1. Beeghly, J. H. (2003). Recent
stabilization of pavement subgrade
soils, base, and recycled asphalt.
Proceedings of International Ash
Lexington, Ky., 0-967 497159, 435

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4. R. K. Paramguru, P. C. Rath, and V. N.

Misra, (2005) Trends in red mud
utilization - a review,
Processing & Extractive Metallurgy
Review, vol. 26, no. 1, pp. 129.
5. Cablik V. (2007). Characterization and
applications of red mud from bauxite
Management) ;23 (4): 29-38.
6. Sun YF, Dong FZ, Liu JT. (2009).
Technology for recovering iron from
red mud by Bayer process (In Chinese).
Met. Mine. ; (9):176178.
7. U. V. Parlikar, P. K. Saka, and S. A.
options for effective utilization of
bauxite residue (Red mud) a review,
in International Seminar on Bauxite
Residue (RED MUD), Goa, India.
8. E. Balomenos, I. Gianopoulou, D. Panias,
I. Paspaliaris (2011) A Novel Red Mud
Treatment Process : Process design and
preliminary results TRAVAUX Vol. 36
No. 40.

2. Gray D.H. & Lin Y.K. (1972). Engineering

Properties of Compacted Fly Ash. Jl. of
SMFE, Proc. ASCE, 98, 361-380.

9. Qiu XR, Qi YY. (2011). Reasonable

utilization of red mud in the cement
industry. Cem. Technol. (6):103105.

3. Kaniraj, S. R., and Havanagi, V. G.

(1999). Geotechnical characteristics of
fly ash-soil mixtures. Geotechnical
Engineering, 30 (2), 129147.

10. Sharif (2012). Flyash mixed with waste

sludge and reinforced with geofiber

Virtu and Foi.