Utility of Eucalyptus tereticornis (Smith) bark and Desulfotomaculum nigrificans for the remediation of acid mine drainage

Bioresource Technology
Evvie Chockalingam, S Subramanian


The efficacy of the bark of Eucalyptus tereticornis (Smith) as an adsorbent for the removal of metal ions and sulphate from acid mine water was assessed. About 96% of Fe, 75% of Zn, 92% of Cu and 41% of sulphate removal was achieved from the acid mine water of pH 2.3 with a concomitant increase in pH value by about two units after interaction with the tree bark, under appropriate conditions. The adsorption isotherms adhered to Freundlich and Langmuir relationships and were exothermic in nature. The free energy of the adsorption process was found to be negative attesting to the feasibility of the reaction. The adsorption kinetics followed the first-order Lagergren rate equation. The filtrate obtained after treatment with E. tereticornis (Sm) bark was found to contain essential elements like potassium, magnesium, calcium, sodium and phosphate apart from carbon which served as a successful growth medium for the sulphate reducing bacteria (SRB) namely Desulfotomaculum nigrificans. Bacterial growth studies showed that about 57% and 72% of sulphate reduction could be achieved at initial pH values of 4.1 and 5.5 respectively of the acid mine water. Pretreatment of the acid mine water with tree bark followed by bioremoval using Dsm. ni...Continue Reading


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