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Preparation of fine mullite powders with high surface area by agglomeration control of alkoxide-derived precursor sol

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Ultra-fine mullite precursor powders were prepared by the hydrolysis of molecular-designed Al,Si-double alkoxide. The surface areas of the resulting mullite powders derived from the sol-gel route varied depending upon the aging and/or drying condition, due to the different agglomeration states of the primary particles, precipitated by the hydrolysis of the precursor solutions. In the case of the solvents with low dielectric constants, the thin electrical double layer is formed on the primary particles and then primary particles agglomerated into coarse secondary agglomerates, leading to mullite powders with high surface areas even after high-temperature calcination. A thick electrical double layer on the primary particles resulted in uniform packing, which formed relatively dense secondary agglomerates during drying, leading to lower surface areas, when solvents with high dielectric constants were used during aging. This agglomeration behavior was confirmed by the pore size distributions and SEM observation of the mullite powders.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Materials Science, Shizuoka University, 3-5-1 Johoku, Hamamatsu 432, Japan; 2: Graduate School of Bio-Applications and Systems Engineering, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Koganei, Tokyo 184, Japan; 3: Ceramic Research Laboratory, Nagoya Institute of Technology, Tajimi 507, Japan


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