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Water Pollution by thiosalts: characterization and remedy are now possible

imagen noticia
02/05/2013 - Mining
The effluents from the mining industry are ones of the major impacts that must be prevented and resolved to achieve a degree of activity compatible with the environment. The most well-known are acidic waters of mine (AAM) or "acid rock drainage (ARD)" which are characterized by a high acidity (low pH) and high concentration of heavy metals. They are produced by the oxidation of sulfides to sulfates and dissolved ferric sulphate hydrolysis. However, it has been recently taken into consideration the problem associated with the presence of thiosalts, which also produce sulfuric generation and an important drop of the pH of the receiving environment.

Thiosalts pollution is less well known, the aspect of waters does not report the formation of acid, and also, their measurement is not easy. In general when using the term thiosalts is often encompass two forms of sulphur that are: (S2O3=) thiosulphate and (S4O6=) tetrathionate, both oxidize over time to sulfate (SO4=) and by the formation of sulfuric acid.

Solutions from AGQ MB

Within the set of services offered by AGQ MB in the areas of metallurgy and environmental geochemistry, stand out tests for acid water generation prediction, their characterization and proposals for treatment processes. Given the problems arising with these new contaminants, now we also offer solutions to mining effluents with thiosalts, as we have the capacity for the characterization of these waters and technological solutions for their treatment. In collaboration with the Group of Biohidrometalurgia of the University of Seville, we have designed continuous processes of chemical-bacterial oxidation of thiosulphate or tetrathionate solutions separately or solutions with presence of both salts.