Special Issue "Seasonal Effects of Rainwater Infiltration on Volumetric Water Content and Water Quality in Mine Wastes"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water Resources Management, Policy and Governance".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 April 2022) | Viewed by 3666

Special Issue Editors

Prof. David John Williams
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Geotechnical Engineering Centre, School of Civil Engineering, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
Interests: Applying Geotechnical Engineering principles to mine waste management and closure
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Chenming Zhang
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
Interests: Development and application of sensors to monitor moisture and contaminant movement in mine wastes

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

During the operation of a mine, and particularly post-closure, stored mine wastes, including waste rock, low-grade ore, tailings and any coarse-grained processing wastes, are susceptible to the climatic setting of the mine site. Seasonal rainfall infiltration and evapotranspiration from revegetated mine waste storages, plus access to oxygen, will dictate the water content of the mine wastes, their reactivity, and the quality of any seepage and runoff from the storages over time. The climate will also vary from year to year, and may vary over time due to climate change.

Coarse-grained mine wastes typically start out relatively dry, and have ready access to oxygen in dumps. Over time, the coarse wastes wet-up due to rainfall infiltration, at a rate dependent on the amount and intensity of rainfall, the particle size distribution of the wastes, and the height of the dump. When the water storage capacity of the dump is exceeded, seepage will emerge from the base and at low points around the toe of the dump. The seepage will carry with it any oxidation products and contaminants. The closure of the dump will generally involve constructing a cover to limit the net percolation of rainfall and/or oxygen ingress.

Mine tailings are typically deposited as a slurry, and may drain down and desiccate, allowing oxygen ingress. Tailings can produce seepage and runoff, which may be contaminated. The closure of the tailings facility will generally involve constructing a cover to limit the net percolation of rainfall and/or oxygen ingress, and requires that the tailings are trafficable.

Prof. David John Williams
Dr. Chenming Zhang
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Acid and metalliferous drainage
  • Coarse processing wastes
  • Evapotranspiration
  • Soluble metals
  • Hydrogen cyanide gas
  • Low-grade ore
  • Radon gas
  • Rainfall
  • Salinity
  • Tailings
  • Waste rock

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Article
Study on Hydraulic Incipient Motion Model of Reinforced Tailings
Water 2021, 13(15), 2033; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13152033 - 26 Jul 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 602
Abstract
Once the flood overtopping accident of a reinforced tailings dam occurs, it will cause great property losses and serious environmental pollution to the downstream residents. In order to further study the microscopic characteristics of the hydraulic erosion of reinforced tailings dams, considering that [...] Read more.
Once the flood overtopping accident of a reinforced tailings dam occurs, it will cause great property losses and serious environmental pollution to the downstream residents. In order to further study the microscopic characteristics of the hydraulic erosion of reinforced tailings dams, considering that the beginning of reinforced tailings particles is the basis of flooding and erosion of reinforced tailings dams, in this paper, a reinforced tailings hydraulic erosion facility was used to carry out the tailings particle start-up test with reinforcement spacing of 5.0, 2.5, 1.7, 1.3, and 1.0 cm, and the influence the law of critical incipient velocity of tailings particles with different reinforcement spacing was revealed. The test results show that, the smaller the reinforcement spacing, the larger the incipient velocity of the reinforced tailings sample. Based on the sediment incipient motion theory, it is assumed that the resistance direction of particle incipient motion is opposite to the particle motion direction. A reinforcement coefficient is introduced to establish the incipient velocity formula of reinforced tailings particles. This model can provide theoretical support for the study of the hydraulic erosion rate of a reinforced tailings dam. Full article
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Article
Coupled Effects of Stress, Moisture Content and Gas Pressure on the Permeability Evolution of Coal Samples: A Case Study of the Coking Coal Resourced from Tunlan Coalmine
Water 2021, 13(12), 1653; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13121653 - 13 Jun 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 992
Abstract
Deep coalbed methane (CBM) is widely distributed in China and is mainly commercially exploited in the Qinshui basin. The in situ stress and moisture content are key factors affecting the permeability of CH4-containing coal samples. Therefore, considering the coupled effects of [...] Read more.
Deep coalbed methane (CBM) is widely distributed in China and is mainly commercially exploited in the Qinshui basin. The in situ stress and moisture content are key factors affecting the permeability of CH4-containing coal samples. Therefore, considering the coupled effects of compressing and infiltrating on the gas permeability of coal could be more accurate to reveal the CH4 gas seepage characteristics in CBM reservoirs. In this study, coal samples sourced from Tunlan coalmine were employed to conduct the triaxial loading and gas seepage tests. Several findings were concluded: (1) In this triaxial test, the effect of confining stress on the permeability of gas-containing coal samples is greater than that of axial stress. (2) The permeability versus gas pressure curve of coal presents a ‘V’ shape evolution trend, in which the minimum gas permeability was obtained at a gas pressure of 1.1MPa. (3) The gas permeability of coal samples decreased exponentially with increasing moisture content. Specifically, as the moisture content increasing from 0.18% to 3.15%, the gas permeability decreased by about 70%. These results are expected to provide a foundation for the efficient exploitation of CBM in Qinshui basin. Full article
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Article
Improvement Effect of Reticular Glass Fibers on the Mechanical Properties of Tailings Sand with the Lenticle (Layered Sandy Soil)
Water 2021, 13(10), 1379; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13101379 - 15 May 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 824
Abstract
Glass fiber is a kind of polymer, which can effectively improve the mechanical properties of sand. However, the improvement effect of glass fibers with a reticular structure is different from that of ordinary fibers. At the same time, the sandy soil structure is [...] Read more.
Glass fiber is a kind of polymer, which can effectively improve the mechanical properties of sand. However, the improvement effect of glass fibers with a reticular structure is different from that of ordinary fibers. At the same time, the sandy soil structure is diversified and part of the soil is layered, such as the lenticle in tailings dam, which often forms layered sandy soil with nearby tailings sand. The existence of the lenticle has adverse effects on the stability of the tailings dam. In order to study the reinforcement effects of reticular glass fibers on tailing sand with the lenticle (layered sand), a series of triaxial shear tests were carried out on the tailings sand by changing the layers of reticular glass fibers and the position of reinforcement. The results demonstrated the following five main points: (1) the shear strength of the tailings with the lenticle is significantly lower than the shear strength of the tailings fine sand, and the influence of the lenticle on the shear strength of the tailings is mainly concentrated on the cohesion. (2) When the reticular fiber is added to the tailings with the lenticle, the cohesion of the sample increases nonlinearly with the increase of the number of fiber layers, while the internal friction angle is basically unchanged. (3) The improvement effect of the reticular fiber on the shear strength of the sample varies with the position of the reinforcement, which is represented as the interface > tailings fine sand > lenticle. (4) Only when the axial strain develops to a certain extent, the reinforcement of the reticular fibers is reflected. (5) The reinforcement effects of reticulated fibers are determined by the interaction of forces at the interface between fibers and sand. The research results can not only provide a scientific basis for the construction of reinforced tailings dam, but also play a guiding role in disaster prevention and mitigation work of reinforced slopes with a weak zone, and even provide the reference for the reinforcement research of layered structures. Full article
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Article
Experimental Study of Mesostructure Deformation Characteristics of Unsaturated Tailings with Different Moisture Content
Water 2021, 13(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13010015 - 24 Dec 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 718
Abstract
A portion of the accumulated tailings in a tailings pond exhibits an unsaturated state. The mechanical properties of unsaturated tailings affect the safety and stability of tailings dams. To investigate the effect of moisture content on the deformation characteristics of unsaturated tailings in [...] Read more.
A portion of the accumulated tailings in a tailings pond exhibits an unsaturated state. The mechanical properties of unsaturated tailings affect the safety and stability of tailings dams. To investigate the effect of moisture content on the deformation characteristics of unsaturated tailings in the mesoscale, a special testing apparatus is applied to experimentally study the settlement deformation and mesostructure evolution of unsaturated tailings under continuous load. The results show that the mesostructure deformation of unsaturated tailings with different moisture contents under load is the same and can be divided into four stages: pore compression, elastic deformation, structure change, and further compaction. However, the critical pressures of the four stages are significantly different; there is an optimal moisture content corresponding to the maximum deformation resistance. Moreover, the influence of the liquid bridge regime on the mesostructure deformation of unsaturated tailings is discussed in this paper. Full article
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