Alabama Patent of the Month – June 2023
Artificial turf has become a popular choice for many venues due to its water-saving properties and durability. In order to benefit from these advantages, users must find ways around the common limitations. Turf requires infill materials which are commonly limited by compaction, dust formation, and the inability to neutralize ammonia. In order to remove limitations and increase the list of advantages, inventor Calcean Minerals and Materials, LLC (Calcean) has developed a groundbreaking solution using aragonite, specifically microporous oolitic aragonite, as an environmentally friendly infill material.
Aragonite is a mineral that can effectively stabilize artificial grass blades and prevent matting. Microporous oolitic aragonite offers several advantages over existing infill materials. It is heavier, providing enhanced stability to the artificial grass. Moreover, it has remarkable thermal control properties, reducing the temperature of the artificial turf by up to 20 degrees Fahrenheit compared to traditional infill materials like silica. This cooling effect is achieved through the unique crystalline morphology and high surface area of oolitic aragonite, allowing for evaporative cooling within the particles.
One of the key benefits of microporous oolitic aragonite is its ability to neutralize ammonia. This is particularly relevant in venues where pet waste or urine may be present. The reactive calcium in the aragonite suppresses ammonia volatilization, addressing the issue at its source and providing a cleaner and healthier environment.
In addition to its cooling and ammonia neutralization properties, microporous oolitic aragonite also resists compaction, wrinkling, and matting of the artificial turf structure. With a uniformity constant between 1.2 and 1.8, the aragonite particles effectively distribute impact energy, reducing the risk of sports injuries such as scrapes and bruises.
The artificial turf structure can be designed to enhance water drainage with aeration porosity of 15% to 30% at a depth of 6 to 8 inches. The aragonite particles have a saturation constant (Ksat) of at least 50 in/hr, ensuring efficient water flow and preventing waterlogging.
Notably, the aragonite particles used in this innovative solution are dredged, not mined, micronized oolitic aragonite. This approach minimizes environmental impact and ensures a sustainable source for the infill material.
By harnessing the unique properties of microporous oolitic aragonite, Calcean’s solution provides an environmentally friendly infill that resists compaction, controls temperature, neutralizes ammonia, and enhances water drainage.
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