Abstract

The fractal dimension values of several kaolins with different structural order and properties have been calculated from N2-adsorption isotherm data according to the Neimark method. All kaolins show a fractal regime in the same nitrogen relative pressure range, with fractal dimension values ranging between 2.38 and 2.57.

The correlation between fractal dimension and other kaolin characteristics (structural order of kaolinite, BET surface area, brightness and particle-size distribution) was determined. The correlation matrix shows that the fractal dimension (Ds) is highly correlated with the degree of structural order-disorder and is also moderately correlated with the particle-size distribution and brightness. No correlation was observed between BET and Ds, probably because the first is a measurement of the accessible surface while Ds represents the scaling properties of the area.

As Ds is a parameter easily calculated and related to the degree of surface heterogeneity, and well correlated with other kaolinite parameters, it can be used to estimate a set of kaolin technical properties for suitability of the kaolin in the paper industry.

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