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Towards 'Precision Mining' of wastewater: Selective recovery of Cu from acid mine drainage onto diatomite supported nanoscale zerovalent iron particles

Crane, R. A. and Sapsford, D. J. 2018. Towards 'Precision Mining' of wastewater: Selective recovery of Cu from acid mine drainage onto diatomite supported nanoscale zerovalent iron particles. Chemosphere 202 , pp. 339-348. 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2018.03.042

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Abstract

This paper introduces the concept of ‘Precision Mining’ of metals which can be defined as a process for the selective in situ uptake of a metal from a material or media, with subsequent retrieval and recovery of the target metal. In order to demonstrate this concept nanoscale zerovalent iron (nZVI) was loaded onto diatomaceous earth (DE) and tested for the selective uptake of Cu from acid mine drainage (AMD) and subsequent release. Batch experiments were conducted using the AMD and nZVI-DE at 4.0–16.0 g/L. Results demonstrate nZVI-DE as highly selective for Cu removal with >99% uptake recorded after 0.25 h when using nZVI-DE concentrations ≥12.0 g/L, despite appreciable concentrations of numerous other metals in the AMD, namely: Co, Ni, Mn and Zn. Cu uptake was maintained in excess of 4 and 24 h when using nZVI-DE concentrations of 12.0 and 16.0 g/L respectively. Near-total Cu release from the nZVI-DE was then recorded and attributed to the depletion of the nZVI component and the subsequent Eh, DO and pH recovery. This novel Cu uptake and release mechanism, once appropriately engineered, holds great promise as a novel ‘Precision Mining’ process for the rapid and selective Cu recovery from acidic wastewater, process effluents and leach liquors.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Engineering
Additional Information: This is an open access article under the terms of the CC-BY Attribution 4.0 International license.
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0045-6535
Funders: Natural Environment Research Council
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 March 2018
Date of Acceptance: 5 March 2018
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2020 16:30
URI: https://orca.cardiff.ac.uk/id/eprint/109775

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