A process for treating fly ash to render it highly usable as a concrete additive. A quantity of fly ash is obtained that contains carbon and which is considered unusable fly ash for concrete based upon foam index testing. The fly ash is mixed with an activator solution sufficient to initiate a geopolymerization reaction and for a geopolymerized fly ash. The geopolymerized fly ash is granulated. The geopolymerized fly ash is considered usable fly ash for concrete according to foam index testing. The geopolymerized fly ash may have a foam index less than 35% of the foam index of the untreated fly ash, and in some cases less than 10% of the foam index of the untreated fly ash. The activator solution may contain an alkali metal hydroxide, carbonate, silicate, aluminate, or mixtures thereof.
U.S. GOVERNMENT INTEREST
This invention was made with government support under Contract No. DE-FG02-05ER84197 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in the invention.