University of Oulu

Sarkkinen, M., Kujala, K., & Gehör, S. (2019). Efficiency of MgO activated GGBFS and OPC in the stabilization of highly sulfidic mine tailings. Journal of Sustainable Mining, 18(3), 115–126.

Efficiency of MgO activated GGBFS and OPC in the stabilization of highly sulfidic mine tailings

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Author: Sarkkinen, Minna1; Kujala, Kauko2; Gehör, Seppo3
Organizations: 1Kajaani University of Applied Sciences, P.O. Box 52, FI-87101, Kajaani, Finland
2Kajaani University of Applied Sciences/Solid Liner Ltd, P.O. Box 52, FI-87101, Kajaani, Finland
3University of Oulu, P.O. BOX 8000, FI-90014, University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.2 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-10-17


MgO activated ground granulated blast furnace slag (GGBFS) is a form of alkali-activated composite, which is successfully used as a binder in the stabilization of highly sulfidic mine tailings. The aim of this study was to compare alkali activated composite (AAC) and ordinary Portland cement (PC) as stabilization agents, as well as their efficiency to stabilize sulfidic tailings and the results of three different diffusion and leaching methods. The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) method was used to compare the environmental impacts of the binders. The lab-scale program covered hydraulic conductivity, compression strength, and freeze-thaw resistance tests of the stabilized tailings. The results indicate that the hydraulic conductivity (6.08 · 10⁻⁹ m/s) and compressive strength (11.5 MPa at 28 days) of AAC were better in comparison, if the corresponding amount of PC (2.04 · 10⁻⁸ m/s and 10.3 MPa at 28 days) was used. LCA shows clear ecological benefits when using AAC instead of PC in terms of lower global warming potential. Diffusion and leaching tests indicated better immobilization efficiency of AAC than PC concerning As, Cr, Cu, Ni, Se, Zn, and especially Mo. In comparison with plain tailings, AAC stabilization reduced leaching of As, Cr, Cu, Mo, Ni, Pb, Se, Zn, Cl, and SO₄ better than PC.

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Series: Journal of sustainable mining
ISSN: 2543-4950
ISSN-E: 2300-3960
ISSN-L: 2543-4950
Volume: 18
Issue: 3
Pages: 115 - 126
DOI: 10.1016/j.jsm.2019.04.001
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1171 Geosciences
Funding: This work was supported by the European Regional Development Fund, Kajaani University of Applied Sciences, Tapojärvi Ltd, Kainuun Voima Ltd, Juuan Dolomiittikalkki Ltd, Kajaanin Romu Ltd, Solid Liner Ltd, and K.H. Renlund’s Foundation.
Copyright information: © 2019 Central Mining Institute. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (