The great majority of asphalt used commercially is obtained from petroleum. Nonetheless, large amounts of asphalt occur in concentrated form in nature. Naturally occurring deposits of asphalt/bitumen are formed from the remains of ancient, microscopic algae (diatoms) and other once-living things. These remains were deposited in the mud on the bottom of the ocean or lake where the organisms lived. Under the heat (above 50 °C) and pressure of burial deep in the earth, the remains were transformed into materials such as asphalt/bitumen, kerogen, or petroleum. Deposits at the La Brea Tar Pits are an example.
Clinker consists of various calcium silicates including alite and belite.Tricalcium aluminate and calcium aluminoferrite are other common components. These components are often generated in situ by heating various clays and limestone. Portland cement clinker is made by heating in a rotary kiln at high temperature a homogeneous mixture of raw materials. The products of the chemical reaction aggregate together at their sintering temperature, about 1,450 °C (2,640 °F). Aluminum oxide and iron oxide are present only as a flux to reduce the sintering temperature and contribute little to the cement strength.
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