Characteristics and potential environmental consequence of weathered materials in the surface layer of a spontaneously combusting mine spoil stockpile

Lu, Wenzhou and Lin, Chuxia and Ma, Yingqun and Huang, S. and Si, Chunhua and Liu, Yong and Li, J. (2010) Characteristics and potential environmental consequence of weathered materials in the surface layer of a spontaneously combusting mine spoil stockpile. Applied Geochemistry, 25 (3). pp. 496-501. ISSN 0883-2927

Abstract

Investigation was carried out to characterize the sulfidic mine spoils in the surface layer of a spontaneously combusting waste rock stockpile. The objective was to assess its potential impacts on acid mine drainage generation. The results show that there were substantial amounts of elemental S and various sulfate minerals in the weathered materials, indicating the occurrence of significant sulfide mineral oxidation in the investigated spontaneously combusting mine spoils (SCMS). It is likely that the surfacially occurring elemental S was derived from the deeper waste rock layers experiencing spontaneous combustion under limited aeration conditions. The significantly higher acidity, EC and SO 2-/4 concentration in the SCMS, relative to the Non-SCMS suggest that spontaneous combustion is a much faster and more powerful process driving sulfide-derived acid generation, compared to microbially-catalyzed oxidation of sulfide minerals. The export of acid sulfate materials from the spontaneously combusting waste rock stockpile not only generates severe acid mine drainage but could also act as an inducer for biologically- catalyzed oxidation of newly exposed sulfide minerals in the areas surrounding the stockpile


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Author version not held.
Depositing User: epEditor USQ
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - No Department
Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2011 02:13
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2013 00:34
Uncontrolled Keywords: environmental consequences; weathered material; surface layer; spontaneous combustion; mine spoil stockpile
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 04 Earth Sciences > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040604 Natural Hazards
04 Earth Sciences > 0402 Geochemistry > 040201 Exploration Geochemistry
09 Engineering > 0914 Resources Engineering and Extractive Metallurgy > 091405 Mining Engineering
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9614 Soils > 961404 Mining Soils
Identification Number or DOI: doi: 10.1016/j.apgeochem.2010.01.004
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/18717

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