Taking up more than 4% of the Earth’s crust, it is unexaggerated to say that calcium carbonate is one of the most vital substances with human’s production activities. This material is widely applied in many fields such as paper, paints, coating, healthcare,…and most importantly, plastic industry. In this article, let’s discover the most common applications of calcium carbonate.
Calcium carbonate might be one of the most well-known substances to humans as most of us encounter its common application – chalk. Nevertheless, it is just one of tons of uses of calcium carbonate as this material is widely applied in various industries such as construction, plastic, paper and even healthcare.
Calcium carbonate (formula CaCO3) is a substance commonly found in rocks under 3 main forms: chalk, limestone and marble. Though they may share some common in terms of chemical formula, they can easily be distinguished by certain identities such as whiteness, purity, thickness and homogeneity. Also, this material is the main component of eggshells, snail shells and seashells.
Thanks to its affordability and outstanding benefits, calcium carbonate can be used in many important applications. Most of the calcium carbonate applied in industry is exploited from mines or quarries. Base on properties and processing technology, calcium carbonate is divided into two main types:
Calcium carbonate is widely used in many industries thanks to its outstanding advantages:
The applications of calcium carbonate ranges from construction, manufacturing to healthcare industry. These following are amongst the most popular applications of calcium carbonate in our daily life.
There is no denying that the application of calcium carbonate as a plastic filler has really revolutionized this industry. Generally, calcium carbonate filler is the combination of plastic resin (approximately 30%) and CaCO3 powder (70% and above depending on specific products).
The use of calcium carbonate in plastic products has its root in the heavy dependence of plastic enterprises on plastic resins. For centuries, plastic manufacturers heavily depended on primary resins until the use of calcium carbonate filler was figured out. Thanks to its affordability and outstanding properties, calcium carbonate filler can take up to 70% by weight of the plastic products. Not only does it save a significant amount of production expenses, calcium carbonate filler also enhances certain properties of end-products such as rigidity, glossiness and brightness. For example, PVC cables can use calcium carbonate at loadings of up to 70 phr (parts per hundred parts of resin) to improve mechanical properties (tensile strength and elongation) and electrical properties (volume resistivity). Polypropylene compounds are often filled with calcium carbonate filler with the proportion of 20–40% to increase rigidity.
Calcium carbonate largely contributes to the sustainability of our infrastructures. It can act as both building material (marble) and cement’s ingredient. When being added to concrete, calcium carbonate improves self-compacting properties, thus helping end-products work more efficiently, increasing strength and smoothing the product’s surface. Besides, it assists in making mortar, which is used in bonding bricks, concrete blocks, stones, roofing shingles, rubber compounds, and tiles. When it comes to asphalt, calcium carbonate plays as a multi-purpose filler/anti-strip agent which is added to hot rolled asphalt to improve the resistance of the mixture and provide a consistent material that is easier to work with.
What’s special about calcium carbonate is that its decomposition can lead to the formation of carbon dioxide and lime, an indispensable component in making steel, glass and paper.
Thanks to its natural white color and light scattering properties, calcium carbonate is widely used as a useful filler in the paper industry to enhance opaque paper’s brightness as well as reducing production cost. Filler is added at the wet-end of the paper making machine to help the outputs brighter and smoother. Furthermore, this material also accounts for as much as 30% by weight in paints. As an extender, calcium carbonate can represent as much as 30% by weight in paints (usually chalk or marble).
Calcium carbonate is widely used as an effective dietary calcium supplement, antacid, phosphate binder, or base material for medicinal tablets. It is also found in many products such as baking powder, toothpaste, dry-mix dessert mixes, dough, and wine. Besides, this material is also an active ingredient in agricultural lime, and is used in animal feed.
Thanks to its antacid properties, calcium carbonate can be also used in industrial settings to neutralize acidic conditions in both soil and water. In The United States, calcium carbonate powder has been currently sprinkled onto acidic waterways to neutralize noxious acids. Scandinavia and Scotland also leverage calcium carbonate in this manner. Limestone deposits are used in the treatment of unplanted areas surrounding affected lakes and water bodies.
After over 5 years of development, PolyFill calcium carbonate filler has been currently available in over 80 countries. Being made of high-quality Vietnamese CaCO3 powder and plastic resins with an exact formula customized for each customer, our filler masterbatch can surely meet all of the strictest requirements. There are various types of calcium carbonate fillers such as PE filler masterbatch, PP filler masterbatch, Transparent filler masterbatch,…
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