Characterisation and Reverse Engineering of Eco-friendly Historical Mortar: Qasr Tuba, Desert Castles in Jordan
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Water Resources and Environmental Management, Al-Balqa Applied University, Salt 19385, Jordan
Nanomaterials for Environmental Applications Research Unit, Foundational Science Research Division, Research for Development Pillar, Royal Scientific Society, Amman, Jordan;
Department of Tourism and Heritage, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates
Department of Chemistry, University of Maine, Orono, Maine 04469, USA
Publication date: 2021-03-01
Corresponding author
Ayoup M. Ghrair   

Water Resources and Environmental Management, Al-Balqa Applied University, Salt 19385, Jordan
J. Ecol. Eng. 2021; 22(3):121-134
The purpose of this study was to investigate the mineral composition of the historical mortars of Qasr Tuba and to re-produce them for the restoration process. The mortar samples were collected from the foundation and walls of Qasr Tuba. The chemical and mineral composition of the mortar was determined using several techniques. In addition, the quantitative minerals content was recalculated for the mortar samples utilizing the material balances equation. Moreover, 12 mixtures of mortar were prepared and tested for fresh and hardened properties, according to their respective national and international standards. The results revealed that two types of mortar were used: (i) the lime-based mortar was used for the foundation and joint mortars in the lower parts of the building walls with a gypsum-hydrated lime ratio of 1:3; and (ii) the gypsum-based mortar was used as joint mortar in the upper parts of the building walls for baked bricks at a gypsum-hydrated lime ratio of 4:1. A pozzolanic reaction in the Qasr Tuba mortar produced a new formation of Xonotlite, Stratlingite, and calcium aluminium hydrate as a secondary cementing mineral. In conclusion, the use of hydraulic lime mortar was considered for building an environment for capturing the CO2 gas.
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