DR Ambedkar IAS Academy

Fly Ash

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Recently, National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) has developed an infrastructure to transport fly ash from power plants in bulk to cement plants, at a cheaper cost.

It will pave the way for efficient and environment friendly transportation.

This development is in line with NTPC’s commitment towards 100% utilization of fly ash from power plants. At present, 63% of the fly ash is being utilised in India.

Fly Ash:

Definition: It is a byproduct from burning of coal in electric power generating plants.

It is called fly ash because it is transported from the combustion chamber by exhaust gases.

It is collected from the exhaust gases by electrostatic precipitators or bag filters.

Composition: Fly ash includes substantial amounts of silicon dioxide (SiO2), aluminium oxide (Al2O3), ferric oxide (Fe2O3) and calcium oxide (CaO).


Resemble Portland cement but is chemically different.

Portland cement is a binding material in the form of a finely ground powder, that is manufactured by burning and grinding a mixture of limestone and clay.

Its chemical composition includes calcium silicates, calcium aluminate and calcium aluminoferrite.

Exhibit cementitious properties.

A cementitious material is one that hardens when mixed with water.

Uses: It is used in concrete and cement products, road base, metal recovery, and mineral filler among others.

Harmful Effects: Fly ash particles are toxic air pollutants. They can trigger heart disease, cancer, respiratory diseases and stroke.

When combined with water they cause leaching of heavy metals in ground water.

It also pollutes the soil, and affects the root development system of trees.


NTPC Ltd. is a central Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) under the Ministry of Power.

Aim: To provide reliable power and related solutions in an economical, efficient and environment-friendly manner, driven by innovation and agility.

It became a Maharatna company in May 2010.

It is located in New Delhi.

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