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Characterization And Recovery Of Accessory Trace Elements From Alabama On Shale Waste Waters
Significant quantities of potentially valuable accessory elements are released to the process waters during mining and processing of Eastern oil shale. In particular, the application of a beneficiation technique to recover kerogen enriched concentrate involves ultrafine grinding and flotation and is a major source of waste waters. High surface area of shale particles, longer contact time in the aqueous phase and the solution chemistry of the pulp enhance the solubilization of many valuable trace elements including aluminum, cobalt. iron, manganese, nickel, uranium and zinc during grinding and flotation. Flotation tailings and retorted spent shale which are rejected as barren kerogen-free waste also contain appreciable amounts of minerals. Natural leaching releases a number of valuable metals to the process waters. Selected separation techniques such as ion-exchange resin and ion-flotation have been utilized to recover these metal values from waste waters.