Among the CaCO3 polymorphs, aragonite demonstrates a better performance as a filler material in the paper and plastic industries. Despite being ideal from the environmental protection perspective, the production of aragonite particles via CO2 mineralization of rocks is hindered by the difficulty in achieving high production efficiencies and purities, which, however, can be mitigated by exploiting the potential ability of chelating agents on metal ions extraction and carbonation controlling. Herein, chelating agent N,N-dicarboxymethyl glutamic acid (GLDA) was used to enhance the extraction of Ca from calcium silicate and facilitate the production of aragonite particles during the subsequent Ca carbonation. CO2 mineralization was promoted in the presence of 0.01–0.1 M GLDA at ≤ 80 °C, with the maximal CaCO3 production efficiency reached 308 g/kg of calcium silicate in 60 min using 0.03 M GLDA, which is 15.5 times higher than that without GLDA. In addition, GLDA showed excellent effects on promoting aragonite precipitation, e.g., the content of aragonite was only 5.1% in the absence of GLDA at 50 °C, whereas highly pure (> 90%, increased by a factor of 18) and morphologically uniform aragonite was obtained using ≥ 0.05 M GLDA under identical conditions. Aragonite particle morphologies could also be controlled by varying the GLDA concentration and carbonation temperature. This study proposed a carbon-negative aragonite production method, demonstrated the possibility of enhanced and controlled aragonite particle production during the CO2 mineralization of calcium silicates in the presence of chelating agents.
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