LOCATIONS, AMOUNTS AND COMPOSITIONS OF KENYAN CLAY SOILS AND THEIR SUITABILITY IN MAKING ELECTRICAL INSULATORS

  • J. M. Karanja Department of Electrical and Power Engineering, Technical University of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya
Keywords: Clay soils, Electrical insulators, Firing temperatures, Vitrification

Abstract

In Kenya, clay soil is locally available in almost all the parts of the country. It has found wide use in ceramic especially in the making of cups, plates, sanitary ware, tiles and bricks for roofing. In this study the locations, compositions and suitability of the clay soils locally available in Kenya were investigated, with the aim of finding out whether any of the clay soils could be used for high voltage low frequency insulation purposes. Out of the six clays soils that were sampled only four from Mukurwe-ini in Nyeri, Eburru in Naivasha, Githu-ini in Karatina and Nunguni in Machakos were analyzed fully. Chemical analysis showed that black cotton soil had heavy presence of oxides and hence it could melt at firing temperatures recommended. Kaolin from Kitandani Machakos had very high percentage of silica that makes it require very high temperatures or a lot of extra flux to be added, in order to vitrify. The research found out that there are sufficient clay soils in Kenya and of the right compositions which are suitable for making of electrical insulators.

Published
2019-04-17