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Schwertmannite precipitated from acid mine drainage: Phase transformation, sulphate release and surface properties
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Chemistry.
In: Applied GeochemistryArticle in journal (Refereed) Submitted
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-2976OAI: diva2:141378
Available from: 2003-11-14 Created: 2003-11-14Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Phase transformation and surface chemistry of secondary iron minerals formed from acid mine drainage
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Phase transformation and surface chemistry of secondary iron minerals formed from acid mine drainage
2003 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The mining of sulphidic ore to extract metals such as zinc and copper produces huge quantities of waste material. The weathering and oxidation of the waste produces what is commonly known as Acid Mine Drainage (AMD), a dilute sulphuric acid rich in Fe(II) and heavy metals. This thesis serves to summarise five papers reporting how the precipitation of Fe(III) phases can attenuate the contamination of heavy metals by adsorption processes.

Schwertmannite (Fe8O8(OH)6SO4) is a common Fe(III) mineral precipitating in AMD environments at pH 3-4. The stability and surface chemistry of this mineral was investigated. It was shown that the stability depended strongly on pH and temperature, an increase in either promoted transformation to goethite (α-FeOOH). Two pH dependent surface species of SO42- were detected with infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy.

The adsorption of Cu(II), Pb(II) and Zn(II) to schwertmannite occurred at lower pH than to goethite, whereas Cd(II) adsorption occurred in a similar pH range on both schwertmannite and goethite. Extended x-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) spectroscopy suggests two surface species for Cu(II) and Cd(II) at the schwertmannite surface. Cu(II) adsorbs monodentately and Cd(II) bridging bidentately to adsorbed SO42-. Both metal ions also adsorb in a bridging bidentate mode to the surface hydroxyl groups. At pH 7.5 up to 2.7 μmol Cd(II) m-2 could be adsorbed to schwertmannite, indicating a large adsorption capacity for this mineral.

The acid-base properties of two NOM samples were characterised and could be well described as diprotic acids below pH 6. The adsorption of NOM to schwertmannite and goethite was very similar and adsorption occured in a very wide pH range.

High concentrations of NOM increased the adsorption of Cu(II) to goethite at low pH whereas a slight decrease was noted at low concentrations of NOM. No effect was detected in the schwertmannite system.

The formation of Fe(III) phases from precipitation of AMD was shown to be very pH dependent. At pH 5.5 a mixture of minerals, including schwertmannite, formed whereas at pH 7 only lepidocrocite (γ-FeOOH) formed. The concentration of Zn(II) in AMD could by adsorption/coprecipitation be reduced to environmentally acceptable levels.

71 p.
Inorganic chemistry, schwertmannite, goethite, lepidocrocite, acid mine drainage, sulphate, natural organic matter, mineral surface, infrared spectroscopy, EXAFS, XRD, ternary surface complex, copper(II), cadmium(II), lead(II), zinc(II), Oorganisk kemi
National Category
Inorganic Chemistry
Research subject
Inorganic Chemistry
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-156 (URN)91-7305-552-2 (ISBN)
Public defence
2003-12-12, KB3B1, KBC, Umeå, 13:00
Available from: 2003-11-14 Created: 2003-11-14Bibliographically approved

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