Experimental study for the assessment of suitability for vegetation growth on coal mine overburden

Ram Chandar, K., Chaitanya, V., and Raghunandan, M.E. (2015)., International Journal of Mining and Mineral Engineering, 6(3), 218-233; doi: 10.1504/IJMME.2015.071173 (SCOPUS; SJR2016: 0.191), 2015

Owing to increased production and productivity of opencast coal mines, large amount of waste rock is removed and stacked in the form of waste dumps. Positive utilisation of such waste rock not only saves considerable dumping land but also reduces problem of maintaining stable and environmentally friendly dumps. One of the major utilisation of waste rock is to use it for vegetation. Therefore a systematic investigation to study the fertile characteristics of overburden waste rock for vegetation was conducted. Waste rock samples collected from an opencast coal mine dump in South India were used in the laboratory experiments. Observations showed the suitability of mine wastes for vegetation when supplemented with additives/nutrients - bottom ashfly ash, lime stone powder and secondary sludge from sewage treatment plants (STPs) were considered for this purpose as additives. Results suggest that the mine-overburden supplemented with sewage waste (atleast 25% by volume) to be suitable for effective vegetation.

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