Next Article in Journal
Near-Infrared Spectroscopy of Limestone Ore for CaO Estimation under Dry and Wet Conditions
Next Article in Special Issue
CO2 Mineralization Using Brine Discharged from a Seawater Desalination Plant
Previous Article in Journal
Trace Element Compositions and Defect Structures of High-Purity Quartz from the Southern Ural Region, Russia
Previous Article in Special Issue
The Force of Crystallization and Fracture Propagation during In-Situ Carbonation of Peridotite
Open AccessArticle

Experimental Deployment of Microbial Mineral Carbonation at an Asbestos Mine: Potential Applications to Carbon Storage and Tailings Stabilization

1
School of Earth & Environmental Sciences, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, QLD 4072, Australia
2
School of Earth and Environment, The University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK
3
School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment, Monash University, Clayton, Melbourne, VIC 3800, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2017, 7(10), 191; https://doi.org/10.3390/min7100191
Received: 30 August 2017 / Revised: 19 September 2017 / Accepted: 6 October 2017 / Published: 12 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carbon Capture and Storage via Mineral Carbonation)
A microbial mineral carbonation trial was conducted at the Woodsreef Asbestos Mine (NSW, Australia) to test cyanobacteria-accelerated Mg-carbonate mineral precipitation in mine tailings. The experiment aimed to produce a carbonate crust on the tailings pile surface using atmospheric carbon dioxide and magnesium from serpentine minerals (asbestiform chrysotile; Mg3Si2O5(OH)4) and brucite [Mg(OH)2]. The crust would serve two purposes: Sequestering carbon and stabilizing the hazardous tailings. Two plots (0.5 m3) on the tailings pile were treated with sulfuric acid prior to one plot being inoculated with a cyanobacteria-dominated consortium enriched from the mine pit lakes. After 11 weeks, mineral abundances in control and treated tailings were quantified by Rietveld refinement of powder X-ray diffraction data. Both treated plots possessed pyroaurite [Mg6Fe2(CO3)(OH)16·4H2O] at 2 cm depth, made visible by its orange-red color. The inoculated plot exhibited an increase in the hydromagnesite [Mg5(CO3)4(OH)2·4H2O] content from 2–4 cm depth. The degree of mineral carbonation was limited compared to previous experiments, revealing the difficulty of transitioning from laboratory conditions to mine-site mineral carbonation. Water and carbon availability were limiting factors for mineral carbonation. Overcoming these limitations and enhancing microbial activity could make microbial carbonation a viable strategy for carbon sequestration in mine tailings. View Full-Text
Keywords: mineral carbonation; mine tailings; chrysotile asbestos; CO2 storage; cement precipitation; carbonate minerals; microbial carbonation; cyanobacteria mineral carbonation; mine tailings; chrysotile asbestos; CO2 storage; cement precipitation; carbonate minerals; microbial carbonation; cyanobacteria
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

MDPI and ACS Style

McCutcheon, J.; Turvey, C.C.; Wilson, S.A.; Hamilton, J.L.; Southam, G. Experimental Deployment of Microbial Mineral Carbonation at an Asbestos Mine: Potential Applications to Carbon Storage and Tailings Stabilization. Minerals 2017, 7, 191.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Search more from Scilit
 
Search
Back to TopTop