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Metals 2017, 7(10), 390; doi:10.3390/met7100390

Environmental Compatibility of Lightweight Aggregates from Mine Tailings and Industrial Byproducts

1
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea
2
Resource Recovery Research Center, Mineral Resources Research Division, Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, Daejeon 34132, Korea
3
Department of Mining and Geological Engineering, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721-0012, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 9 August 2017 / Revised: 7 September 2017 / Accepted: 18 September 2017 / Published: 25 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Valuable Metal Recycling)
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Abstract

A lightweight aggregate was produced by sintering the mixture of gold mine tailings, red mud, and limestone at 1150 °C. The physical (i.e., skid resistance, abrasion resistance, and bond strength) and environmental (i.e., leachability) feasibility of this aggregate was assessed to consider its potential use as a construction material for bicycle lanes. The skid resistance (British pendulum number of 71) and bond strength (1.5 N·mm−2) of the aggregate were found to be appropriate for this use. However, the abrasion loss value of the aggregate was found to be 290 mg, which exceeds the limit of Korean Standard KS F 281 (200 mg). Heavy metals were found to not leach from the aggregate in various leaching tests. These include Korean (Korea Standard Method for Solid Waste), American (Toxic Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP), Synthetic Precipitation Leaching Procedure (SPLP)), and European (BS EN 12457-1) leaching tests, despite the raw materials containing significant amounts of Pb, As, and F. However, leachate extracted from the aggregate exhibited an aquatic toxicity to Daphnia magna of 13.94 TU24hr and 14.25 TU48hr, most likely due to a high pH and Ca concentration originating from the free CaO present in the aggregate. The data suggests that the physical properties of the reconstructed aggregate are appropriate for use in bicycle lane construction, however the dissolution of Ca and the pH level of the leachate need to be controlled to protect aquatic ecosystems. View Full-Text
Keywords: mine tailings; red mud; waste limestone; leachability; toxicity; lightweight aggregate mine tailings; red mud; waste limestone; leachability; toxicity; lightweight aggregate
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Ju, W.J.; Shin, D.; Park, H.; Nam, K. Environmental Compatibility of Lightweight Aggregates from Mine Tailings and Industrial Byproducts. Metals 2017, 7, 390.

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