Heavy Metals and Radioactivity Reduction from Acid Mine Drainage Lime Neutralized Sludge

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2 Citations (Scopus)


The worldwide known treatment processes of acid mine drainage result into the formation of hydrous ferric oxides that is amorphous, poorly crystalline and into the generation of hazardous voluminous sludge posing threat to the environment. Applicable treatment technologies to treat hazardous solid material and produce useful products are limited and in most cases nonexistence. A chemical treatment process utilizing different reagents was developed to treat hazardous acid mine drainage (AMD) sludge with the objectives to conduct radioactivity assessment of the sludge generated from lime treatment process and determine the reagent that provides the best results. Leaching with 0.5 M citric acid, 0.4 M oxalic acid, 0.5 M sodium carbonate and 0.5 M sodium bicarbonate was investigated. The leaching time applied was 24 hours at 25 °C. The characterization of the raw AMD revealed that the AMD sludge from lime treatment process is radioactive. The sludge was laden with radioactive elements namely, 238U, 214Pb, 226Ra, 232Th, 40K and 214Bi. 0.5 M citric acid provided the best results and the hazardous contaminants were significantly reduced. The constituents in the sludge after treatment revealed that there is a great potential for the sludge to be used for other applications such as building and construction.

Original languageEnglish
Article number012024
JournalIOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 12 Mar 2018
Event2017 5th International Conference on Environment Pollution and Prevention, ICEPP 2017 - Singapore, Singapore
Duration: 14 Dec 201716 Dec 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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