WATER & EFFLUENT SOLUTIONS

 

SUSTAINABLE SOLUTIONS  THROUGH SCIENCE

THE SYMBIOTIC AQUATIC BIOREACTOR  (SABR)

Wayne Sampey,  with The Earth Sustaining Sciences Institute (TESSI) over more than 30 years, designed, developed, proved and implemented the SABR process and its ability to treat all levels of acid mine drainage (AMD), extreme alkaline process drainage, other metals , metalloids, and organic reagents, and salinity in contaminated waters and soils. SABR allows reduction of unwanted, sub-compliant water volumes utilising tailored bioreactors to correct pH issues at all levels (0-14 pH) and remove contaminants; decreasing contamination of water, soil and the environment, thus reducing risk. SABR is scalable to any required size and throughput using open systems. In situations where space is at a premium or contaminants may be especially hazardous, the systems can be implemented in closed systems. Complex chemistries often result in a system where conditions appropriate to strip one class of contaminants are conducive to stabilisation of others in solution. SABR allows serial reactor implementation using synergistic sets of biocells, such that consecutive manifolds can control all contaminants. SABR can rapidly, naturally and cost effectively used treat AMD/ARD and process waters to a standard that allows their safe use, disposal on site, or discharge off site with negligible risk and within compliance requirements. The SABRBODS process is a unique combination of naturally occurring, localized, cooperative bioorganisms formed into manifolds or SABR Symbiotic Colonies (SABR-SC). Thus far, 360 different SABR-SC’s have been developed and proven in a wide range of conditions. It delivers commercially viable management solutions and is a societally sustainable management solution to challenging effluent and contamination. The SABRBODS process, passive, local taxon structured water and soil treatment systems have thus-far successfully remediated all globally presented soil and water challenges with the demonstrated ability to raise the pH  from 0.5 pH to 8.7 pH (up to 9 pH) or reduce it from 14 pH to 6.1 pH balancing the realised effluent to neutral, stripping up to 99% of bioavailable metals and metalloid contaminants and significantly reducing salinity up to more than 95%.

‘SABR Simplex and ’SABR Complex Systems have delivered all-natural, minimal risk acid mine and negatively impacting solutions in mining and minerals processing:

  •  Coal,
  •  Gold,
  •  Copper,
  •  Lead and Zinc,
  •  Platinum,
  •  Iron ore,
  •  Poly metals, and
  •  Rare Earths.

Processing:

  •  Phosphate refining,
  •  Acid manufacture,
  •  Alumina refining,
  •  Coal fired power generation.

Tailings (wet & dry dam tailings and dry stockpile):

  •  Coal,
  •  Gold,
  •  Copper,
  •  Iron ore,
  •  Bauxite/Alumina, 
  •  Phosphogypsum, and 
  •  Fly ash.

SABR BioSolve Systems have delivered all-natural, minimal risk solutions in:

  •  Bauxite/Alumina Refining Effluent and Red Mud Stockpile and Residue, and
  •  Phosphogypsum Effluent and Waste Stockpile remediation.

SABR BioStim and SABR BioGrow Systems have delivered solutions in Tropical, Temperate, Hot Arid and Cold climes and environments including:

  •  Element saturated,
  •  Nutrient depleted,
  •  High Salinity,
  •  Sodic,
  •  Acidic,
  •  Alkaline,
  •  Coastal,
  •  Intertidal,
  •  Riverine, and
  •  Highlands.

The SABR process, passive, local taxon structured water and soil treatment systems have thus-far successfully remediated all globally presented water challenges with the demonstrated ability to raise the pH from 0.5 to 8.7 pH (up to 9 pH) or reduce it from 14 pH to 6.1 pH balancing the realized effluent to neutral, stripping up to 99% of bioavailable metals and metalloid contaminants significantly reducing salinity by more than 95%. The SABR BioCell approach to mineral and process affected waters has been advanced and demonstrated the following in separate applications in:

  1. Gold mine heavily metalliferous pit lake water 2.8 pH to 9 pH in 360 hrs
  2. Gold mine uranium reduction from above 30 µg/L to zero in 360 hrs
  3. Polymetals mine radionuclide reduction from above 110 µg/L to zero in 24 hrs 
  4. Gold mine arsenical pit lake water 890 μg/L to 3 μg/L in 24 hrs
  5. Platinum mine metalliferous discharge water 4.3 pH to 6.9 pH in 24 hrs
  6. Acid refinery heavily metalliferous and organics contaminated discharge water 0.5 pH to 3.9 pH in 48 hrs
  7. Phosphogypsum heavily metalliferous water 1.5 pH to 6.1  pH in 48 hrs
  8. Coal mine heavily metalliferous pit water 1.9 pH to 6.4 pH in 60 hrs
  9. Coal fired power station water 9.8 pH to 5.3 pH in 60 hrs and to 6.5 pH in a further 20 hrs
  10. Coal fired power station fly ash 9.8 pH to 5.3 pH in 60 hrs and to 6.5 pH in a further 20 hrs
  11. Coal mine heavily metalliferous underground decant water 1.5 pH to 5.6 pH in 60 hrs
  12. Coal mine underground decant water 2.5 pH to 5.4 pH in 24 hrs and to 7.4 pH in 260 hrs
  13. Copper mine effluent from 2.25 pH to 7.2 pH in 12 hours and 6.5 pH to 7.8 pH in 4 hours
  14. Gold mine tailings storage heavily metalliferous and organics contaminated water 4.3 pH to 5.5 pH in 24hrs
  15. Gold mine waste dump heavily metalliferous water 1.5 pH to 6.5 pH in 24hrs
  16. Gold mine heap leach heavily metalliferous and organics contaminated water 1.5 pH to 6.5 pH in 24hrs
  17. Gold mines waste dump heavily metalliferous water 1.5 pH to 6.5 pH in 24hrs
  18. Iron ore mine heavily metalliferous pit water 2.46 pH to pH 7 pH in 24 hrs
  19. Copper processing effluent from 3.76 pH to 7.4 pH in 23 hours
  20. Copper processing effluent from 2.1 pH to 7.2 pH
  21. Fly River PNG metalliferous water 6.02 pH to 7.4 pH in 12 hrs
  22. Fly River riparian and agricultural metalliferous soil 5.51 pH to 7.65 pH in 12 hrs
  23. Pyrite processing effluent from 5.5 pH to 7.8 pH in 12 hours
  24. Bauxite & Alumina effluent and red mud tailings from 13.8 pH to below 7 pH in 50 hrs
  25. Mine pit lake salinity 25 ppt reduced by 66% to 8.9 ppt (2014) in 168 hrs
  26. Gold mine poisoned wetland systems remediated to comprehensive growth in 700 hrs
  27. Gold mine contaminated soils remediated from zero to comprehensive growth in 2,000 hrs
  28. Seawater salinity 35 ppt reduced by 71% in 72hrs. (2015)
  29. Sustainable vegetation growth in highly contaminated tailings materials in 130 hrs
  30. Crop biostimulation increasing growth by up to 300% and advancing germination by up to 30%
  31. Acidic metaliferrous tailings drainage-degraded old growth vegetation rehabilitated in 400 hrs
  32. Desalination of up to 99% in agricultural water and soils (2017)
  33. SABRBODS process laboratory project has delivered >95% seawater desalination (2017) all effluent usable
  34. Bionutrification of chemical saturated farm, saline soils to achieve stable commercial crop growth (2017)
  35. Bionutrification of chemical saturated farm, saline soils to achieve stable commercial crop growth (2019)
  36. Bauxite & Alumina effluent and red mud tailings from 13.8 pH to below 7 pH in 50 hrs (2019)
  37. Bionutrification of polyculture farm soils to achieve stable commercial crop growth (2019)
  38. Bionutrification of polyculture farm soils to achieve stable commercial crop growth (2019)
  39. Desalination and Bionutrification of farm soils to commercial crop (2019)
  40. Legacy gold mine 2.91 pH to 7.5 pH in 4 hrs (2020)
  41. Legacy gold mine 4.25 pH to 7.62 pH in 4 hrs (2020)
  42. Legacy gold mine 8.47 pH to 7.61 pH in 4 hrs (2020)
  43. Seawater desalination from 33.63 ppt to 0.98 ppt in 12 hours (2020)
Engineered examples of scalable open SABR systems
SABR-POLISHING WETLAND SUPPORT

As a useful, though not essential, addition for long term remediation projects, SABR can be implemented with an enhanced natural or artificial wetland for final polishing. Such systems work hand in hand with the SABR process to further lower contaminant levels, increasing dwell time to enable further testing of pre-release water stability should such be a requirement, and increase emergency containment in the unlikely case of a flooding event or inadvertent high flow rates. As an added benefit an artificial SABR wetland system acts as a fully bio-diverse and natural species supportive wetland. In the case of  a SABR co-opted natural wetland, biodiversity and support for natural species is increased parallel to enhancement of wetland quality.  A SABR co-opted wetland is a win-win for sustainable ecology, biodiversity and all benefits that flow from these key concepts. If a wetland polish is an appropriate part of a solution, TESSI can also design and implement specific SABR processes tailored to work with the wetland system already in place.

SABR Systems are scalable to any required size and throughput using open systems. In situations where space is at a premium or contaminants may be especially hazardous, SABR can be implemented in closed systems. Complex chemistries often result in a system where conditions appropriate to strip one class of contaminants is conducive to stabilisation of others in solution.

SABR allows series and parrallel reactor design implementation using different sets of biocells incorporating:

  •       Site and regional and potentials investigation,
  •       Design of substrates and minimal risk microbiological manifolds, and development of plans,
  •       Design of tailored SABR bioreactor application pilot and system development, and implementation.