Journal article

Improving clay-based tailings disposal: Case study on coal tailings

R deKretser, PJ Scales, DV Boger

AICHE JOURNAL | AMER INST CHEMICAL ENGINEERS | Published : 1997

Abstract

The role of swelling clays in hindering the compressional dewatering characteristics of coal-mine tailings is examined. The effects of electrolyte concentration and ion exchange in improving the shear and compressional rheology are compared. Suspensions studied include actual mine tailings (thickener feed and thickener underflow) as well as synthetic clay dispersions made from clay collected from the coal seam. It was shown that the most important parameter in controlling the properties of the tailings suspension is "controlled" dispersion in the presence of a Ca2+ electrolyte concentration in excess of that required to (1) prevent initial swelling and (2) provide full cation exchange of the..

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University of Melbourne Researchers