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PASSIVE TREATMENT OF ACID MINE DRAINAGE IN BIOREACTORS: SHORT REVIEW, APPLICATIONS,
 

Summary: PASSIVE TREATMENT OF ACID MINE DRAINAGE IN
BIOREACTORS: SHORT REVIEW, APPLICATIONS,
AND RESEARCH NEEDS
G.J. Zagury and C. Neculita
Department of Civil, Geological, and Mining Engineering - École Polytechnique
de Montréal, Montreal, QC, Canada
B. Bussière
Department of Applied Sciences - Université du Québec en Abitibi-
Témiscamingue, Rouyn-Noranda, QC, Canada & NSERC Polytechnique/UQAT
Industrial Chair in Environment and Mine Waste Management and Canada
Research Chair on Abandoned Mine Site Rehabilitation
ABSTRACT
Sulphate-reducing passive bioreactors have received much attention lately as alternating technologies for acid mine
drainage (AMD) treatment. The long-term efficiency is sometimes limited because they rely on the activity of sulphate-
reducing bacteria (SRB) which is primarily controlled by the reactive mixture composition. Our review shows that the
most important mixture component is the organic carbon source. Several studies conducted to find the best mixture of
natural organic substrates for SRB showed that a combination of organic carbon sources is preferable than a unique
source. In addition to metal sulphide precipitation, which is the main metal removal mechanism, other mechanisms
including adsorption and precipitation of metal carbonates and hydroxides occur in passive bioreactors. The more
successful designs allow the flow to be reversed between upward and downward modes. Pilot and field-scale passive

  

Source: Aubertin, Michel - Département des génies civil, géologique et des mines, École Polytechnique de Montréal

 

Collections: Engineering; Environmental Management and Restoration Technologies