Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering (PhD)

Administrative Home Department

Department of Chemical Engineering

Advisor 1

S. Komar Kawatra

Advisor 2

Timothy Eisele

Committee Member 1


Committee Member 2

Lei Pan

Committee Member 3

Tony Rogers


After an extensive literature review, it was found that there was no reliable way for predicting the impact of binders or mixtures of binders on iron ore pellets. This is a challenging problem because iron ore pellets are a complex product of an agglomeration process which is typically controlled only to the extent that is necessary to form a quality product for ironmaking. This work identifies the resistance of a dried pellet to abrasion as a prime variable to record and analyze to understand the influence of combined pellet binders. A consistent method of measuring abrasion resistance is identified and via novel analysis shown to be highly supported by theory. In turn, this theory is used to connect abrasion resistance to compressive strength and for mixing results for application to other binder dosages. Furthermore, compatibilities and incompatibilities between a group of dispersant based binders are identified, and a methodology of understanding, categorizing, and making qualitative predictions this compatibility is also proposed. The most major conclusion is that a one-parameter model based on abrasion kinetics allows for the accurate understanding of abrasion data, which can in turn be correlated to other abrasion data with good reliability for determining the properties of mixed binders, or which can be used to estimate other mechanical properties of the pellet such as compressive strength. This provides novel insight into mixed binders using a simple test by isolating the strength contribution of the binders in the abrasion resistance.