A zero-waste approach to blast furnace slag by synthesis of mesoporous nanosilica with high surface area

  • H. FakharEmail author
  • J. Jiang
Original Paper


Nanosilica has a number of properties that pose advantages in a range of applications. In this study, we performed a series of experiments to prepare nanosilica particles from blast furnace slag. The collected samples were initially treated using nitric acid to remove insoluble silica, and the influence of various key factors on the silica extraction efficiency was examined. The optimum values of liquid-to-solid ratio, temperature, leaching time, and acid concentration were 2.3:1, 120 °C, 90 min, and 50%, respectively. Optimal silica nanoparticles were obtained via filtration and modification using cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide, a cationic surfactant. The specific surface area (SBET) of unmodified silica was 303.83 m2/g, while that of silica particles modified with cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide increased to 1506 m2/g, corresponding to ultrafine particles. In addition, this research was performed using a waste by-product and then converted it into a high-quality, valuable product, which can help to mitigate the significant environmental problems caused by blast furnace slag waste in both China and Pakistan. This study may be used as a reference for nanosilica particle preparation from blast furnace slag.


Acid dissolution process Blast furnace slag Cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide Nanosilica 



We are thankful for the kind and timely cooperation of Beijing National Center for Electron Microscopy (BNEM) at Tsinghua University.

Supplementary material

13762_2019_2492_MOESM1_ESM.docx (20 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 19 kb)


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Copyright information

© Islamic Azad University (IAU) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EnvironmentTsinghua UniversityBeijingChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory for Solid Waste Management and Environment SafetyMinistry of Education of ChinaBeijingChina
  3. 3.Collaborative Innovation Center for Regional Environmental QualityTsinghua UniversityBeijingChina

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