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The purpose of this study is to draw attention to the possibility of implementation of natural processes of snow metamorphism for concentration of fluid wastes. An experiment with different fluid wastes was performed in both a laboratory-scale and pilot-scale operations. An elution of anions and cations, as well as conductivity and selected other parameters during the melting process, were monitored. As was expected, a high concentration of contaminants was reported in the initial runoff of melt water. For most monitored cases, the concentration of compounds in melt water has reached a level of raw wastewater after melting of 20 to 30% of the total volume of snow, and has been progressively decreasing. The investigation covered such fluid wastes as landfill leachate, mine tailings, wood leachate, swine wastes and wastewater from a fertilizer plant. Most toxic elements and organics were concentrated in the range of 85-95—. Selected results from concentration of landfill leachate, mine tailings and wastewater from the fertilizer plant are presented. It was concluded that metamorphism occurring in the man-made snow, created by atomizing fluid wastes in a cold atmosphere, could be successfully used for the concentration of selected industrial fluid wastes. The atomizing freeze crystallization process, as a process for cold climates, appears to be a suitable candidate for concentration and treatment of these kinds of fluid wastes in Canada, Northern USA and elsewhere, where cold climates exist.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2000-01-01

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