Turkish Journal of Earth Sciences




In this study, geochemical analyses, as well as short-term contact leaching and acid-base accounting tests, were carried out to determine the occurrence of acid mine drainage (AMD) by static tests in the ore stockpile areas at the Mutki Cu-Fe-Cr deposit (Bitlis, SE Turkey). According to the short-term contact leaching tests, the high enrichment in trace element concentrations in ore-bearing samples, especially in potentially toxic metals such as Cr, Cu, Mn, and Zn, were directly related to sulphide and oxide mineralizations. The pH (3.27-4.05) values of water samples, together with the classification of the intracontinental water resources, indicated that the water quality is the fourth class. Leaching tests, paste pH (3.42-4.46) and sulphide-sulphur (3.9-13.4 wt%) values also suggested that there was AMD production potential in the mineralization area. The AMD production potential was supported by the high mobility of several elements, such as Fe, Mg, Cr, As, Cu, S, and Zn. In ore samples, net neutralization potential (NNP) and net potential ratio (NPR) values were less than -20 kg CaCO3/t and 1, respectively. The basalts forming the basement rock of the stockpile area were characterized by permeable to slightly permeable properties that potentially increase the contamination risk of the groundwater due to seepage in the stockpile area. In order to prevent seepage in the stock area, geomembrane (synthetic waterproofing covers) should be laid at the base to ensure impermeability. The improvements planned in the stock area were modeled by the finite element method and seepage discharges at a depth of 5 m were determined as 1.34 × 10-17m3/s. Thanks to these planned applications, surface and groundwater pollution can be efficiently prevented.

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