An investigation of crack formation in surface paste disposal method for pyritic Pb-Zn tailings

Başçetin A., TÜYLÜ S., ÖZDEMİR O., ADIGÜZEL D., Benzaazoua M.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, vol.15, no.2, pp.281-288, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 15 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s13762-017-1380-5
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.281-288
  • Keywords: Pb-Zn tailings, Surface paste disposal, Physical and geochemical stability, Crack intensity analysis, Environmental risk, ADSORPTION
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Surface paste disposal method can be used to minimize environmental risks during storage of mine process tailings. There are some researches and industrial applications which prove success of the method. The surface paste disposal of mineral process tailings obtained from a Pb-Zn underground mine was simulated considering mine site conditions at laboratory scale in the study. The paste material was stored in the cabin/container layer by layer, and then, the cracks occurred after the paste formation of each layer were analyzed by image process. Meanwhile, leachate water collected from the bottom of the cabin was subjected to electrical conductivity (EC) analysis. Furthermore, the wetting-drying process was conducted to simulate the climatic conditions of the region. Additionally, some physical and geochemical parameters such as matric suction, volumetric water content, and oxygen consumption of the paste material were obtained using sensors displaced into different layers. The results of the crack analysis for each layer showed that the cracks intensity increased at lower layers. Moreover, the crack intensity and EC values of each layer showed a similar trend, and the crack intensity increased almost five times during the wetting-drying tests. The measured values of the parameters obtained from the tests indicated that the deposited paste material can be stabile during the deposition over the years under the climatic conditions of the region.