ABSTRACT This study aims to the initial characterization of Aptian sedimentary limestones in the Kef region located in the North-West of Tunisia in order to use in industrial fields. The limestone samples were collected from three outcrops respectively named Jebel Jerissa, Jebel Hmeima and Jebel Harraba. A geochemical characterization highlights a variation of the weight percentage (wt%) as follows: CaO (53 - 55), MgO (0.04 - 0.28), Al2O3 (0.07 - 0.51), Fe2O3 (0.41 - 2.87), and a loss on ignition (41.62 - 43.35). The other oxides (K2O, SO3, Na2O) are in trace amounts. Mineralogical analysis revealed that limestones contain more than 95% of calcite and the clay impurities are the minor phases detected. Petrographic study showed that these limestones are packestone-wakestone type. The hardness of Aptian limestones crosses the upper limit of the hard domain. Geotechnical tests reveal a Dry Micro Deval (MDS) coefficient varying from 23% to 33%, a Wet Micro Deval (MDH) coefficient with values oscillating around 26% to 36%, a Los Angeles coefficient (LA) about 25% against a value of the compressive strength ranging from 593 Kg/cm2 to 866 Kg/cm2. The gravimetric tests highlighted a flexural strength value from 106 Kg/cm2 at 208 Kg/cm2, while the ultrasonic coefficient oscillates from 4876 m/s to 5233 m/s, indicating the low porosity of these limestone (0.5% to 1%). The density recorded an average value of 2.50 g/cm3. The various properties studied have proved that the limestone studied can be used in various industrial fields such steel industry, aggregate, cement industry and marble.
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Salah, I. , Jemaï, M. , Mezza, S. and Boughdiri, M. (2018) Geotechnical Study of the Aptian Limestone of the Kef Region, Northwestern Tunisia: Evaluation for Industrial Use. Open Journal of Geology, 8, 1084-1101. doi: 10.4236/ojg.2018.812066.
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