Inderscience Publishers

Boron removal from waste water originating in the open pit mines of Bigadiç Boron Work by means of reverse osmosis

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In this study, the base water originating in Simav Open Pit Mine containing the most important reserves of colemanite and ulexite boron minerals, has a boron concentration of 150 ± 50 mg/L, was treated to maximum 2 mg/L with the help of pilot RO system which was designed with two–phase reverse osmosis system. This system was designed and produced by Italian GEL Company. Temperature, pH, pressure and inlet boron concentration were chosen as research parameters in this study and influences of these parameters were analysed. According to the results of test periods; the efficiency of boron removal increases with increasing inlet pH and inlet pressure; the efficiency of boron removal decreases with increasing inlet temperature and inlet boron concentration. According to the economical analysis delivered during research period, the cost of 1 m³ treated water is 1.21 € in 2010, the result for the year 2011 is 1.28 €. According to the cost analysis of the plant over years, energy and caustic consumptions took the biggest parts; it was concluded that the percentage of caustic consumption was 25.93 and the energy consumption was 22.11 in 2010; the percentage of caustic consumption is 21.92 and the energy consumption is 28.40 in 2011.

Keywords: boron removal, reverse osmosis, economic analysis, high pH operation, open pit mining, wastewater treatment, Turkey, caustic consumption, energy consumption

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