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Hydrogeochemical Behavior of Reclaimed Highly Reactive Tailings, Part 2: Laboratory and Field Results of Covers Made with Mine Waste Materials

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Open AccessArticle

Hydrogeochemical Behavior of Reclaimed Highly Reactive Tailings, Part 1: Characterization of Reclamation Materials

1
UQAT-Polytechnique Research Institute on Mine and Environment, Rouyn-Noranda, QC J9X 5E4, Canada
2
NSERC-UQAT Industrial Chair on Mine Site Reclamation, Rouyn-Noranda, QC J9X 5E4, Canada
3
Canada Research Chair on Integration of the Environment in the Mine Life Cycle, Rouyn-Noranda, QC J9X 5E4, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2020, 10(7), 596; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10070596
Received: 28 April 2020 / Revised: 26 June 2020 / Accepted: 29 June 2020 / Published: 30 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reutilization and Valorization of Mine Waste)
The production of solid mine wastes is an integral part of the extraction and metallurgical processing of ores. The reclamation of highly reactive mine waste, with low neutralizing potential, is still a significant challenge for the mining industry, particularly when natural soils are not available close to the site. Some solid mine wastes present interesting hydro-geotechnical properties which can be taken advantage of, particularly for being used in reclamation covers to control acid mine drainage. The main objective of this research was to evaluate the use of mining materials (i.e., tailings and waste rock) in a cover with capillary barrier effects (CCBE) to prevent acid mine drainage (AMD) from highly reactive tailings. The first part of the project reproduced in this article involves context and laboratory validation of mining materials as suitable for a CCBE, while the companion paper reports laboratory and field results of cover systems made with mining materials. The main conclusions of the Part 1 of this study were that the materials studied (low sulfide tailings and waste rocks) had the appropriate geochemical and hydrogeological properties for use as cover materials in a CCBE. Results also showed that the cover mining materials are not acid-generating and that the LaRonde tailings are highly reactive with pH close to 2, with high concentrations of metals and sulfates.
Keywords: acid mine drainage; cover with capillary barrier effects; mine wastes; reactive tailings; kinetic tests; laboratory column tests; field cell tests acid mine drainage; cover with capillary barrier effects; mine wastes; reactive tailings; kinetic tests; laboratory column tests; field cell tests
MDPI and ACS Style

Kalonji-Kabambi, A.; Bussière, B.; Demers, I. Hydrogeochemical Behavior of Reclaimed Highly Reactive Tailings, Part 1: Characterization of Reclamation Materials. Minerals 2020, 10, 596.

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