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In Situ Remediation of Heavy Metal Contaminated Soil or Rock Formations by Directed and Controlled Crystallisation of Natural Occurring Minerals

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  • Based on the idea to copy crystallisation and precipitation phenomena occurring in nature, a new technology was developed allowing the preparation of metastable, mineral forming solutions. If these solutions are brought into soil or rock formations, directed precipitation of slightly soluble minerals takes place. Immobilisation of dissolved heavy metals as well as overlaying of reactive mineral surfaces with insoluble minerals can be achieved. It is possible to prepare solutions leading to the formation of gypsum, BaSO4, CaCO3, Ca(OH)2, Al(OH)3 or Fe(OH)3. The successful large-scale application of BaSO4 forming solutions was demonstrated in the former uranium mine Koenigstein of Wismut GmbH, (Germany).

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