Groundwater Restoration for in Situ Solution Mining of Uranium.
Riding-JR; Rosswog-FJ; Chatwin-TD; Et Al
In situ solution mining of uranium has environmental advantages over conventional mining. The leaching of uranium, however, alters the groundwater quality in the aquifer where the mining occurs. Currently, regulations require that the groundwater be restored to approximately its original condition. This Bureau of Mines paper reviews the state-of-the-art in restoring groundwater quality after in situ uranium leaching. Current restoration practices discussed include disposal of liquid wastes in deep disposal wells and evaporation ponds, producing from all wells during restoration, and recirculating water purified in surface plants. Methods for predicting the effectiveness and cost of current techniques are presented. Possible alternative techniques are also described. Two restoration operations are discussed.
1979 Ann. Mtg., Soc. Min. Eng., AIME, New Orleans, Louisiana, Feb. 18-22, 1979, SME Preprint 79-127