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Open AccessArticle

Spatial Mapping of Acidity and Geochemical Properties of Oxidized Tailings within the Former Eagle/Telbel Mine Site

Research Institute on Mines and Environment (RIME), Université du Québec en Abitibi Témiscamingue, 445 Boul. Université, Rouyn-Noranda, QC J9X 5E4, Canada
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Minerals 2019, 9(3), 180; https://doi.org/10.3390/min9030180
Received: 14 January 2019 / Revised: 6 March 2019 / Accepted: 12 March 2019 / Published: 14 March 2019
At some orphaned and abandoned mine sites, acid mine drainage can represent a complex challenge due to the advanced tailings’ oxidation state as well as the combination of other factors. At the field scale, several parameters control sulfides’ oxidation rates and, therefore, the acidity generation. The objective of this paper is to map the acidity and geochemical properties of oxidized tailings within a closed tailings storage facility. Based on systematic sampling, various geochemical parameters were measured within the oxidized Joutel tailings, including the: Neutralization potential, acid-generating potential, net neutralization potential, neutralization potential ratio, paste pH, thickness of oxidized, hardpan, and transition zones. The different parameters were integrated in geographical information system (GISs) databases to quantify the spatial variability of the acidity and geochemical properties of oxidized tailings. The oxidized tailings were characterized by low sulfide (mainly as pyrite) and carbonate (mainly as siderite/ankerite) contents compared to unweathered tailings. Acidic zones, identified based on paste pH, were located in the eastern portion of the southern zone and at the northern tip of the northern zone. View Full-Text
Keywords: acid mine drainage; geographical information systems; paste pH; siderite; multivariate analysis; spatial mapping acid mine drainage; geographical information systems; paste pH; siderite; multivariate analysis; spatial mapping
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MDPI and ACS Style

Elghali, A.; Benzaazoua, M.; Bussière, B.; Genty, T. Spatial Mapping of Acidity and Geochemical Properties of Oxidized Tailings within the Former Eagle/Telbel Mine Site. Minerals 2019, 9, 180.

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