1070-4272/03/7602-0171 $25.00 C 2003 MAIK [Nauka/Interperiodica]
Russian Journal of Applied Chemistry, Vol. 76, No. 2, 2003, pp. 171!174. Translated from Zhurnal Prikladnoi Khimii, Vol. 76, No. 2, 2003,
Original Russian Text Copyright + 2003 by Makarov, Manakova, Vasil’eva, Belyaevskii.
AND INDUSTRIAL INORGANIC CHEMISTRY
Optimization of Olivine Processing To Obtain
V. N. Makarov, N. K. Manakova, T. N. Vasil’eva, and A. T. Belyaevskii
Tananaev Institute of Chemistry and Technology of Rare Elements and Mineral Raw Materials, Kola Scientific Center,
Russian Academy of Sciences, Apatity, Russia
Received September 16, 2002
Abstract-Problems associated with the optimization of processing of olivine from mining wastes and, in
particular, from dressing tailings of vermiculite ores with sulfuric acid in order to obtain a magnesium
meliorant characterized by alkaline reaction were considered. The influence of a seed on the course of silica
gel coagulation and on the filtration of the forming solutions was studied.
Atmospheric precipitation near mining and smelt-
ing plants is characterized by increased acidity.
Although the strongest impact of acid rains on the
environment is observed on territories closely adjacent
to nonferrous metallurgy plants, the influence of these
rains is also pronounced at a considerable distance
from the plants. In particular, acid rains in Kola
peninsula also fall in regions virtually lacking any
industrial plants, including nature reserves. This at-
mospheric precipitation, which is characterized by pH
ranging from 3.6 to 4.7, contains 2.1 to 52.7 mg l
of sulfate ions .
Under the action of acid rains, a number of neces-
sary nutritious elements, Mg
, and Mn
ions in the first place, are selectively leached from
plants and soil of forest ecosystems .
To compensate for the deficiency of cations, it is
necessary to use meliorants that would replenish the
nutritious substances. In view of the increased acidity
of soil in zones affected by acid rains, the meliorants
must possess a neutralizing capacity and also improve
the soil structure. With account of the large areas of
deteriorated forests, the meliorants must be compar-
atively low-cost and readily accessible.
An important factor in making lower the cost of
a meliorant is cheapness of raw materials. The most
promising in this regard are mining wastes. Annually,
industrial countries produce hundreds of millions of
tons of ferrous and various nonferrous metals. Most
part of ores is separated, in the course of ore dressing,
in the form of nonmetalliferous minerals from the
valuable minerals and discarded as waste into tailing
dumps. The maintenance of tailing dumps is rather
expensive. Finely dispersed tailings react with atmo-
spheric agents. Flotoreagents, which are sorbed on
the surface on nonmetalliferous minerals, and prod-
ucts of oxidation of sulfides are leached into surface
and ground waters. In the course of oxidation of ore
dressing tailings, readily soluble sulfates of heavy
metals pass into the environment . The large vol-
ume of the mining waste accumulated gives no reason
to believe that they could be processed in near future.
Therefore, the primary objects of study and targets for
utilization technologies are mining wastes that can be
reprocessed into ecological-purpose materials .
Meliorants can be manufactured from mining
wastes mainly composed of silicates (olivinites, du-
nites, etc.) or magnesium hydrosilicates (serpentinites).
In particular, meliorants can be obtained from
serpentine-containing materials, which are wastes
formed in processing of copper-nickel, vermiculite,
and some other ores. However, serpentine materials
are to be activated in order to obtain the final product.
This involves certain energy expenditure, which is not
Use of mining wastes mainly composed of anhy-
drous magnesium silicates, olivines, which are fre-
quently richer in magnesium oxide than serpentines,
offers more promise for manufacture of meliorants. In
this case, strip-pit olivinites of the Kovdor phlogopite
deposit, dressing tailings of vermiculite ores, strip-pit