Iron-mining and ore processing (mainly laterite) are faced with the major challenge of generated overburden and topsoil aggregates (iron-mud) as a major solid waste. Storage and reclamation are two severe problems with harmful environmental concerns. The present paper investigates the possible uses of iron mine waste for developing a new-class hybrid polymer composite and its tribological characteristics. The polymer composites are fabricated through a hand-layup process by reinforcement of woven glass ﬁbres in an epoxy polymer ﬁlled with different weight proportions of iron-mud. Erosion wear experiments were conducted on the fabricated composites according to a Box–Behnken design approach using an air jet-type erosion tester. The artiﬁcial neural network predicted values which exhibited close relationship with the experimental erosion values. Filler addition resulted in an improvement in the erosion resistance. A meta-heuristic approach like particle swarm optimization reveals the minimum erosion value at an optimal parametric combination. Finally, the morphology of eroded surfaces was critically examined by scanning electron microscopy and possible erosion mechanisms were presented.
Volume 43, 2020
Continuous Article Publishing mode
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