The environmental benefits of waste desulfurization were evaluated in the Santa Catarina coal field, Brazil. Coal waste from a beneficiation plant was separated into three density fractions, using a two stage process. Characterization of these fractions indicated that the low (D < 2.2 g/cm3) and high (D > 2.7 g/cm3) density fractions were potentially suitable for energy and sulfuric acid production, respectively. The waste fraction of intermediate density (2.2 < D < 2.7 g/cm3) represented 69% of the total mass studied and had a relatively low sulfide content, and it was postulated that it may be suitable for land disposal with minimum risk to the surrounding environment. This hypothesis was tested using laboratory-scale static and kinetic tests, which indicated that although the fraction remained net acid generating, the rate and net amount of metals, salts, and acidity that leached was considerably less than that of the discards before separation. It was concluded that this approach could reduce the amount of waste generated, as well as the associated pollution risk.
Mine Water and the Environment – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 25, 2017
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