Emerging Investment Opportunities in Hydrated Lime (Calcium hydroxide) Production from Limestone (Calcium Carbonate). Most Demanding Profitable Business Idea of Chemical Industry.
Hydrated Lime (Calcium hydroxide) is an important material to be used within the chemical processing industry, within the building business, and in water treatment processes. The manufacture of hydrated lime starts by calcining high quality limestone (Calcium Carbonate) at elevated temperatures to supply quicklime (Calcium oxide) a volatile powder. Hydrated lime successively is created by reacting Quicklime with a controlled amount of water to form a dry white powder.
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The term “hydrated lime” is widely used to describe a powdery calcium hydroxide product made by reacting quicklime with a controlled more than water. The product is essentially dry and generally contains below 1% of un-reacted water. The process is called “hydration” and should be differentiated from “slaking” which involves the production of a dispersion of calcium hydroxide in water. However, the expression “slaked lime” is employed as a generic term for hydrated lime, milk of lime and lime putty. A calculable 10 to 15% of the quicklime produced in developed countries is converted in to hydrated lime and therefore the percentage is also higher in countries that don't have a large steel industry. Because hydrating plants are relatively complex and can be fed with surplus grades of quicklime, there are relatively few of them and they are usually located at a lime works. While the chemical reactions concerned within the formation of hydrated lime are simple, the physical chemistry is complex.
Types of Hydrated Lime
Normal Hydrated Lime
Normal hydrated lime products are only partially hydrated and/or workability. Additional additives and/or long soak period are required for these products to perform effectively in building applications. At least a 24hours soak period is required before Type N dolomitic hydrated lime can be used acceptably for masonry or plaster applications. High calcium hydrated lime products normally are classified as Type N hydrates due to their poor water retention. ASTMC270 (mortar for unit masonry) state that if a Portland cement/lime blend contains Type N hydrated lime, the blender must show through performance or testing that the Type N product is not detrimental to the soundness of the mortar.
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Special Hydrated Lime
Special hydrated lime products are a combination of calcium and magnesium hydroxides. Type S hydrated lime products are characterized by their chemical purity, high level of hydration and water retention. In building applications, Type S hydrated lime products have high hydration levels and controlled plasticity (water retention). This allows for minimal soak periods prior to application. Though there are some high calcium Type S hydrated lime products, most building applications utilize Type S dolomitic hydrated lime.
Uses & Applications
Hydrated Lime, which is an extremely versatile chemical, is the most widely used and lowest cost alkali in the world. Major applications are listed over the page. Lime is not toxic to workers and users, nor is air borne dust particles harmful to the public. After the minerals processing industry, lime’s greatest use is for environmental cleanup of water, waste water, air and solid wastes. It is also used for water softening and clarification. In waste water treatment of sewage effluents, lime removes phosphorus and nitrogen. It also kills bacteria. Lime absorbs and neutralizes sulfur oxides from industrial stack gases, thereby beneficiating air quality.
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Hydrated lime is used in mortar, plasters, cements, lime paints, medicine and in agriculture to "sweeten" the acid soil. It is also used in ammonia recovery, in gas manufacture, disinfectant, water softening, purification of juice in cane sugar industry, manufacture of hard rubber products, water paints, petrochemicals, and calcium chemicals like bleaching powder. Hydrated lime is used in curing of leather, in paper and as buffer and neutralizing agent.
Hydrated lime is also used as flux in metallurgy, in specialized lubricant, as a bonding agent, as a filler, in refractory etc. It is also employed in building construction as cementing material and plasticizer.
In agriculture, hydrated lime supplies calcium and magnesium as plant nutrients. It is also used in highway construction and for soil stabilization, as a filler and ant stripping agent in asphalt. For water treatment soda ash, steel, and pulp-paper manufacture and for a variety of other industrial applications, hydrated lime finds a good market.
Hydrated lime is used as a disinfectant, buffer and neutralizing agent. In food industry, it is a food additive and a shell-forming agent in poultry and snail farming. It is also used to produce rayon’s, calcium hypochlorite bleaches, phosphate chemicals, citric acid, glycerine, polypropylene oxide and for controlling acidity.
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Hydrated lime finds good and extensive use in the production of non-ferrous metals such as lead, uranium, zinc, silver, copper and gold. In aluminium smelting and production of high-grade steel, hydrated lime also plays an important role as an input.
hydrated lime are widely used in floatation or recovery of many non-ferrous ores, in particular copper ore floatation in which lime acts as a depressant (settling aid) and maintains proper alkalinity in the floatation circuit.
Global Hydrated Lime Market
On the basis of geography, the global hydrated lime market will be segmented into nine key regions, namely, South East Asia Pacific, Latin America, Western Europe, middle east & Africa, China, Japan, eastern Europe, and India. With growing investments in the Latin America region within the construction sector, the market within the region is projected to witness significant traction. Further, an increase of coal mining and therefore the production of coal within the Asian market are expected to subsequently drive the demand for hydrated lime at the regional level. Increasing demand for pesticides from the South East Asia Pacific region, the hydrated lime market is estimated to grow with a healthy rate of growth. Also, China and India are major consumers of hydrated lime. In term of steel production, Europe dominates the market (the region has 168.7 million metric tons production of steel in 2017), because of that, the demand for hydrated lime in Europe can increase in next few years. Further, the hydrated lime market in developed economies like North America estimated to grow with a healthy growth rate throughout the forecast period.
The national demand estimate for hydrated lime in excess of 100,000 MT per annum and the estimated total supply figure is less than 35,000 MT per annum with most of the demand been met through importation. The global hydrated lime market size will grow by 31.24 MMT during 2018-2022. In terms of value, the global lime market is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of ~ 6% during the forecast period, and reach a value of US$ ~65.4 Bn by 2027.
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The growing steel industry is also driving the lime market demand. Hydrated lime has its application in providing the steel products protection from corrosion as well as impurities. It is like a coating on the products, which helps to neutralize the acid of the slag. Thus, the growth in the steel industry is directly affecting the lime industry growth. It’s increasing use in the metallurgical application while producing steel is driving the growth of the lime market further. The product is also used in the manufacturing of aluminium and magnesium. It has wide applications in the refining of metal ores and non-ferrous metals like gold, silver, and aluminium, among others.
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