SCM developer Progressive Planet tests plasma-processed quartz silica

Sources: Progressive Planet Solutions Inc., Kamloops, British Columbia; CP staff

Progressive Planet cites promising compressive strength performance of concrete specimens prepared with PozPyro, a supplementary cementitious material processed with plasma technology and abundantly available crystalline silica feedstock. Designed in collaboration with Pyrogenesis Canada, the binder exhibits potential as a partial portland cement replacement. Mortar cube testing on four separate PozPyro mix batches showed strength activity index—the standard compressive strength indicator for such specimens—averaging 108.75 percent at 7 days. Water demand rates of 99 percent to 109 percent reflected good workability.


“Mortar cubes need to possess 75 percent of the strength of the control cube at 7 days to pass the ASTM test, so we are delighted with the average strength [recorded],” says Progressive Planet CEO Steve Harpur, referencing a benchmark of ASTM C109, Standard Test Methods for Compressive Strength of Hydraulic Cement Mortars. “The results of our first batch were so good that we decided to run an additional three batches to confirm these results.” 

PozPyro specimen test results, adds PyroGenesis CEO P. Peter Pascali, “Underscore yet again the transformative nature of plasma in producing materials, in both an economically and environmentally beneficial manner, key to heavy industry. Our experience developing new ways to use plasma to process silica quartz into valuable end products continues to lead to a variety of unique and interesting outputs, with PozPyro being the most recent example. The cement industry is a major target for us, and we have high expectations for the PozPyro green cement additive material we have developed with Progressive Planet.”

PyroGenesis and Progressive Planet officials view PozPyro as one potential answer to concrete producer needs for alternatives to fly ash, regional supplies of which have been disrupted by the retirement of coal-fired power plants in Canada and the U.S.