Predicting arsenic concentrations in the porewaters of buried uranium mill tailings

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doi: 10.1016/S0016-7037(99)00259-8
Authors:Langmuir, Donald; Mahoney, John; MacDonald, Anjali; Rowson, John
Author Affiliations:Primary:
Colorado School of Mines, Hydrochem Systems Corporation, Golden, CO, United States
Other:
Sandia National Laboratories, United States
University of Bristol, United Kingdom
LGIT, France
Hydrologic Consultants, Lakewood, CO, United States
COGEMA Resources, Canada
Volume Title:Geochemistry in aqueous systems; a special issue in honor of Werner Stumm
Volume Authors:Stipp, Susan L. S., editor; Brady, Patrick V.; Ragnarsdottir, K. Vala; Charlet, Laurent
Source:Geochemistry in aqueous systems; a special issue in honor of Werner Stumm, edited by Susan L. S. Stipp, Patrick V. Brady, K. Vala Ragnarsdottir and Laurent Charlet. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 63(19-20), p.3379-3394. Publisher: Pergamon, Oxford, International. ISSN: 0016-7037
Publication Date:1999
Note:In English. 47 refs.; illus., incl. 8 tables
Summary:The reduction of As concentrations to < 5 mg/litre in processed tailings and raffinates being discharged from a U mill in N Saskatchewan, Canada, and ensuring that these concentrations in pore waters would remain < 5 mg/L for 50 to 10 000 yr, are addressed in large-scale experiments reproducing conditions in the mill. The study included mineralogical characterization of the arsenates (scorodite, cabrerite-annabergite), geochemical modelling of arsenate solids, precipitation and chemical equilibria, kinetic modelling of arsenate solids dissolution and statistical trends in arsenate concentrations with time. Scorodite and cabrerite-annabergite host most of the As and Ni as the pH is increased with slaked lime; following scorodite precipitation, HFO precipitates and adsorbs most of the remaining As. The results indicate that As concentrations in porewaters are unlikely to exceed 1-2 mg/L even after 10 000 yr of burial in this facility.
Subjects:Acid mine drainage; Activation energy; Arsenates; Arsenic; Concentration; Controls; Decontamination; Eh; Experimental studies; Geochemistry; Ground water; Hydrochemistry; Iron oxides; Kinetics; Laboratory studies; Metal ores; Metals; Nickel; Oxides; PH; Phase equilibria; Pollutants; Pollution; Pore water; Scorodite; Surface water; Tailings; Uranium ores; Waste disposal; Waste disposal sites; Waste management; Canada; Midwest Lake Deposits; Saskatchewan; Western Canada; Cigar Lake Deposit; JEB Tailings Management Facility; McClean Lake Deposit; Northern Saskatchewan
Record ID:2000003126
Copyright Information:GeoRef, Copyright 2018 American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from Mineralogical Abstracts, United Kingdom, Twickenham, United Kingdom
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