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SELENIUM TREATMENT/REMOVAL ALTERNATIVES DEMONSTRATION PROJECT - MINE WASTE TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM ACTIVITY III, PROJECT 20
MSE Technology Applications, Inc. SELENIUM TREATMENT/REMOVAL ALTERNATIVES DEMONSTRATION PROJECT - MINE WASTE TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM ACTIVITY III, PROJECT 20. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/600/R-01/077.
This document is the final report for EPA's Mine WAste Technology Program (MWTP) Activity III, Project 20--Selenium Treatment/Removal Alternatives Demonstration project. Selenium contamination originates from many sources including mining operations, mineral processing, abandoned mine sites, petroleum processing, and agricultural run-off. Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation's Garfield Wetlands-Kessler Springs site has a well characterized selenium contaminated artesian flow and ws selected as the site for demonstrating various selenium treatment technologies. The contamination is of a low-level, high-volume nature that makes most treatment options expensive. The objective of this project was to test and evaluate technologies capable of removing selenium from the water to below 50 micrograms/liter (ug/L), the MCL for selenium. Several technologies were selected: 1) EPA's BDAT - ferrihydrite precipation with concurrent adsorption of selenium onto the ferrihydrite surface (ferrihydrite adsorption) optimized by MSE; 2) A catalyzed cementation process developed by Dr. Larry Twidwell, Montana Tech, University of Montana with assistance by MSE; and 3) a biological selenium reduction (BSeR) process developed by Applied Biosciences Corp (AB) of Salt Lake City, UT. Because ferrihydrite adsorption is considered EPA's BDAT for selenium removal from solution, it was considered the baseline technology and was used as a basis for comparison with the innovative selenium removal processes. All three of the processes were able to achieve the target level for selenium in effluent samples under optimized conditons. A secondary objective of the project was to perform an economic analysis for scale-up of the processes to treat 300 gpm flow. The retrofil of a vacant water treatment plant/associated equipment was used as the bsis for the capital costs. The BSeR process was the most economically attractive technology demosntrated during this project.