project . 2017 - 2020 . Closed


Integrated mineral technologies for more sustainable raw material supply
Open Access mandate for Publications
European Commission
Funder: European CommissionProject code: 730480 Call for proposal: H2020-SC5-2016-OneStageB
Funded under: H2020 | RIA Overall Budget: 7,915,360 EURFunder Contribution: 7,915,360 EUR
Status: Closed
01 Jun 2017 (Started) 30 Nov 2020 (Ended)
Open Access mandate
Research data: No

The aim of ITERAMS is to develop a proof of concept for more environmentally friendly and economic mine site operations, in Europe and globally. For that, the ITERAMS project focuses on the isolation of process waters completely from the adjacent water systems. This will require development of new methods for optimising and controlling water qualities at each process step. As a bonus, this will also facilitate the recovery of additional valuable constituents. The ITERAMS project will develop research and dimensioning protocols suitable for use at the mines processing different ores. In this context, validation of the concepts will have an essential role. In the planned project, it will be performed at selected mine sites processing sulphide ores, although the concepts will be generic and thus also suitable for other types of ores like gold, rare earth, and phosphate ores. The closure of water cycles at each process stage will inevitably increase their thermodynamical and kinetic unstability (as is also the case with conventional tailing ponds). In addition, water temperatures will also increase, causing higher bacterial growth, especially for iron and sulphur oxidising species. This will result in a dynamic situation that has never so far been worked on. The ITERAMS project will create new academic and industrial knowledge and capabilities to tackle such questions. The tightly closed water cycles can be realised only if the tailings can be filtered and stacked dry. ITERAMS will demonstrate the use of geopolymerisation to create water and oxygen tight covers on the deposited tailings. For that, the tailings streams will be modified for their easier geopolymerisation. The ITERAMS water and waste efficient methods will be validated at mine sites in Finland, in Portugal and additionally either in Chile or South Africa.

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