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Sustainable Utilization of Metallurgical Resources and Solid Waste Resources

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 March 2024 | Viewed by 17860

Special Issue Editor

Department of Resource and Environment, Northeastern University, Shenyang 110819, China
Interests: comprehensive utilization of resources; functional materials
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

At present, the comprehensive utilization of solid waste resources and the requirement of highly cost-effective protective measures against neutron radiation hazards are difficult hot topics of current research.

At present, the comprehensive utilization of metallurgical resources and solid waste resources produced by their utilization has attracted extensive attention from many scientific researchers. It is a frontier and hot field of scientific research. After the separation of metallurgical raw minerals, a large number of waste rocks are obtained, which leads to the waste of useful elements. Additionally, the associated environmental problems (e.g., waste gas, waste water) are serious. Thus, there are still problems in the current technology and core scientific problems of comprehensive utilization need to be solved, which is also the common concern of relevant researchers in the comprehensive utilization of resources.

Nuclear technology is applied widely worldwide—especially the application of neutrons. However, neutron radiation is a potential hazard to both radiation workers and the general public. Shielding materials for neutron radiation hazards are considered to be the most effective radiation protection strategy. Thus, many useful materials of different types for protection against ionizing radiation hazards have been studied in recent years, especially regarding the development of lightweight shielding materials with good processability, wide application and low cost for neutron radiation hazards.

For example, some researchers used boron-containing resources to prepare materials for nuclear shielding, and excellent results were produced. Thus, this Special Issue welcomes papers about the utilization of resources in the nuclear shielding field.

The scope and purpose of this Special Issue are the green utilization of metallurgical and solid waste resources, aiming to provide new theory for the use of metallurgical resources. The Issue is concerned with new green methods for the utilization of these useful resources—especially shielding analysis and the materials prepared from these resources. We welcome authors in the field to contribute to this Issue.

Dr. Mengge Dong
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • metallurgical resources
  • solid waste
  • utilization
  • green method
  • nuclear shielding

Published Papers (9 papers)

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15 pages, 6021 KiB  
Article
Unconventional High-Value Utilization of Metallurgical Iron-Bearing Dust as Shielding Composite for Medical X-rays
Sustainability 2023, 15(8), 6682; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15086682 - 14 Apr 2023
Viewed by 840
Abstract
Iron-bearing dust is one of the main solid wastes in the metallurgical industry, and currently, it is mainly disposed of according to accumulation, which brings great environmental risks. Therefore, this paper proposes a method of preparing X-ray shielding materials by hot pressing using [...] Read more.
Iron-bearing dust is one of the main solid wastes in the metallurgical industry, and currently, it is mainly disposed of according to accumulation, which brings great environmental risks. Therefore, this paper proposes a method of preparing X-ray shielding materials by hot pressing using iron-bearing dust as the filler and polyimide resin powder as the matrix. A CT imaging system was used to test the X-ray shielding performance of the materials. The results demonstrated that shielding material I-95 had a shielding percentage of more than 95% at a tube voltage of 55 kVp and a tube current of 2 mA, and the thickness of the half-value layer was less than 0.68 mm. The shielding percentage and mass attenuation coefficient of the composites showed an increasing trend with increased filler addition, tube voltage, and tube current intensity, while the half-value layer thickness showed the opposite trend. Furthermore, the shielding percentage of composites with different fillers was affected by the voltage and hardly affected by the current variation. The dominant part of the shielding material interaction across the tested tube voltage range was photoelectric absorption. The prepared composite is a low-cost material and has high efficiency and is an ideal medical X-ray shielding material. Full article
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10 pages, 3128 KiB  
Article
Effect of PbO and B2O3 on the Physical, Structural, and Radiation Shielding Properties of PbO-TeO2-MgO-Na2O-B2O3 Glasses
Sustainability 2022, 14(15), 9695; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14159695 - 06 Aug 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1281
Abstract
The process of melt quenching is utilized in the preparation of the PbO-TeO2-MgO-Na2O-B2O3 glasses. The effect of PbO and B2O3 on the physical, structural, and radiation shielding properties of present glasses have been [...] Read more.
The process of melt quenching is utilized in the preparation of the PbO-TeO2-MgO-Na2O-B2O3 glasses. The effect of PbO and B2O3 on the physical, structural, and radiation shielding properties of present glasses have been presented in this study. As the lead concentration rises, both the density and the molecular weight rise, climbing from 3.283 to 3.923 g/cm3 and from 105.638 to 128.675 g, respectively. The utilization of PbO as an alternative to B2O3 contributes to an increase in the overall number of at-oms, which in turn contributes to an increase in the molar volume. The XRD spectra show that the samples are amorphous. The different bending and stretching vibrations of the bonds present in the samples are shown by the FTIR spectra. The mass attenuation coefficient (MAC), linear attenuation coefficients (LAC), half-value layers (HVL), and effective atomic number (Zeff) were calculated using Phy-X software within the energy range 0.284–2.506 MeV. These obtained verdicts advocate that pre-pared Pb4 glass containing the highest concentration of PbO showed supreme shielding ability comparing the rest of the pre-pared glasses. According to these results, it can be said that PbO and B2O3 are the weighty additive composites for glass composition in the interest of radiation shielding. Full article
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16 pages, 4045 KiB  
Article
An Extended Investigation of High-Level Natural Radioactivity and Geochemistry of Neoproterozoic Dokhan Volcanics: A Case Study of Wadi Gebeiy, Southwestern Sinai, Egypt
Sustainability 2022, 14(15), 9291; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14159291 - 29 Jul 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1387
Abstract
High-level natural radioactivity, geochemical, geological, and radiological hazard assessment of the poorly investigated Wadi Gebeiy Dokhan volcanics rocks are discussed. Wadi Gebeiy Dokhan volcanics are located in Southwestern Sinai, Egypt, covering an area of ~1.3 km2. Dokhan volcanics rocks are represented [...] Read more.
High-level natural radioactivity, geochemical, geological, and radiological hazard assessment of the poorly investigated Wadi Gebeiy Dokhan volcanics rocks are discussed. Wadi Gebeiy Dokhan volcanics are located in Southwestern Sinai, Egypt, covering an area of ~1.3 km2. Dokhan volcanics rocks are represented by porphyritic dacite. Geochemically, they have medium-k characters and originate from calc-alkaline magma within a volcanics arc environment. Along the fault plane striking NNE-SSW, and at its intersection with the NW-SE fault plane, altered Dokhan volcanics occur with high radioactive anomalies. Radiological parameters (absorbed dose rate, radium equivalent, activity annual effective dose, external and internal hazard indices) are used to evaluate their suitability as an ornamental stone. Except for the absorbed dose rate, all the radiological hazard indices show that unaltered Dokhan volcanics can be used as an ornamental stone. Controversially, the applied radiological indices reveal that altered Dokhan volcanics have a higher content than the recommended values of UNSCEAR, reflecting their risk on human organs. Full article
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18 pages, 7056 KiB  
Article
Analysis of the Radiological, Mineralogical and Long-Term Sustainability of Several Commercial Aswan Granites Used as Building Materials
Sustainability 2022, 14(6), 3553; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14063553 - 17 Mar 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1367
Abstract
The widespread usage of granite in the building sector motivated us to conduct this research and examine the material’s sustainability in terms of the investigated characteristics. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the statistical analysis results for the mineralogical impact on [...] Read more.
The widespread usage of granite in the building sector motivated us to conduct this research and examine the material’s sustainability in terms of the investigated characteristics. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the statistical analysis results for the mineralogical impact on radiological hazards indices, such as the equivalent of radium, absorbed gamma dose rate, annual effective dose, internal and external hazard indices, as well as the gamma-ray index, that were calculated to estimate the environmental risks associated with these granites used as building materials, to protect the public from excessive radioactivity exposure. We focused primarily on statistical significance at a 95% confidence level. We employed a non-parametric test (Kruskal–Wallis Test) rather than a one-way ANOVA, to determine the statistical significance of the samples due to the lack of homogeneity or normality among them. To assess the difference between the samples, we used the Mann–Whitney Test on each pair of samples. Additionally, Pearson correlation coefficients for all the mineralogical results are computed. The presence of K-rich minerals (Kefeldspars, biotite) and accessories such as uranophane, uranothorite, allanite, xenotime, fergusonite, aeschynite, zircon, cassiterite, apatite, and sphene, which are mostly found in granitic rocks, determines the level of natural radioactivity of the investigated granites. Most of the rock samples analyzed have indicators of radioactive dangers that are within the acceptable level range, indicating that they are suitable for use as building materials. On the other hand, some samples have environmental criteria that are higher than international standards, indicating that they are unsuitable for use as construction materials. Full article
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15 pages, 2422 KiB  
Article
Transmission Factor (TF) Behavior of Bi2O3–TeO2–Na2O–TiO2–ZnO Glass System: A Monte Carlo Simulation Study
Sustainability 2022, 14(5), 2893; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14052893 - 02 Mar 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 1538
Abstract
The main objective of the present work was to assess the gamma radiation shielding competencies and gamma radiation transmission factors (TFs) for some tellurite glasses in the form of Bi2O3–TeO2–Na2O–TiO2–ZnO. MCNPX general-purpose Monte [...] Read more.
The main objective of the present work was to assess the gamma radiation shielding competencies and gamma radiation transmission factors (TFs) for some tellurite glasses in the form of Bi2O3–TeO2–Na2O–TiO2–ZnO. MCNPX general-purpose Monte Carlo code (version 2.6.0) was utilized for the determination of TF values at various well-known radioisotope energies for different glass thicknesses from 0.5 cm to 3 cm. Moreover, some important gamma ray shielding properties were also determined in the 0.015–15 MeV energy range. The results show that glass densities were improved from 5.401 g/cm3 to 6.138 g·cm3 as a function of Bi2O3 increment in the glass composition. A S5 glass sample with the maximum Bi2O3 additive was reported with superior gamma ray shielding properties among the studied glasses. It can be concluded that Bi2O3 can be used as a functional tool in terms of improving glass density and, accordingly, gamma ray shielding attenuation properties of tellurite glasses, where the role Bi2O3 is also critical for other material properties, such as structural, optical, and mechanical. Full article
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16 pages, 5662 KiB  
Article
The Effect of WO3-Doped Soda Lime Silica SLS Waste Glass to Develop Lead-Free Glass as a Shielding Material against Radiation
Sustainability 2022, 14(4), 2413; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14042413 - 20 Feb 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2093
Abstract
The current study aims to enhance the efficiency of lead-free glass as a shielding material against radiation, solve the problem of the dark brown of bismuth glass, and reduce the accumulation of waste glass disposed in landfills by using soda-lime-silica SLS glass waste. [...] Read more.
The current study aims to enhance the efficiency of lead-free glass as a shielding material against radiation, solve the problem of the dark brown of bismuth glass, and reduce the accumulation of waste glass disposed in landfills by using soda-lime-silica SLS glass waste. The melt-quenching method was utilized to fabricate (WO3)x [(Bi2O3)0.2 (ZnO)0.3 (B2O3)0.2 (SLS)0.3]1x at 1200 °C, where x = (0, 0.01, 0.02, 0.03, 0.04, and 0.05 mol). Soda lime silica SLS glass waste, which is mostly composed of 74.1 % SiO2, was used to obtain SiO2. Radiation Attenuation parameters were investigated using narrow-beam geometry and X-ray fluorescence (XRF). Furthermore, the parameters related to radiation shielding were calculated. The results showed that when WO3 concentration was increased, the half-value layer was reduced, whereas the μ increased. It could be concluded that WBiBZn-SLS glass is a good shielding material against radiation, nontoxic, and transparent to visible light. Full article
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13 pages, 25971 KiB  
Article
Novel Shielding Mortars for Radiation Source Transportation and Storage
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1248; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031248 - 22 Jan 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1873
Abstract
New types of mortar, M1 (60% sand, 25% cement, 10% ball clay, and 15% WO3), M2 (50% sand, 25% cement, 10% ball clay, and 25% WO3), M3 (60% sand, 25% cement, 10% Barite, and 15% WO3), and [...] Read more.
New types of mortar, M1 (60% sand, 25% cement, 10% ball clay, and 15% WO3), M2 (50% sand, 25% cement, 10% ball clay, and 25% WO3), M3 (60% sand, 25% cement, 10% Barite, and 15% WO3), and M4 (50% sand, 25% cement, 10% Barite, and 25% WO3), were prepared and the impact of WO3 and barite on their radiation shielding performance and mechanical properties was evaluated. The radiation attenuation factors were evaluated using five radioactive point sources, and a sodium iodide (NaI) scintillation detector (3″ × 3″) was used to detect the attenuation of gamma ray photons emitted from radioactive sources. The density values of the mortar samples lie within the range of 2.358 and 2.602 g/cm3. The compressive strength and the tensile strength of the prepared mortars increased with the increasing percentage of WO3. The M4 mortar had the highest linear attenuation coefficient (LAC) value. The LAC results demonstrated that adding barite and a high percentage of WO3 into the mortars notably enhanced the radiation shielding performance of the prepared mortar. The relationship between the half value layer (HVL) and the energy is direct, and so was used to calculate the thickness of mortar needed to absorb or scatter half the number of low-energy photons falling on the samples. At 0.06 MeV, the HVL values of the samples were 0.412, 0.280, 0.242, and 0.184 cm for samples M1–M4, respectively. The highest HVL values, obtained at 1.408 MeV, were 5.516, 5.202, 5.358, and 5.041 cm. Thus, a thinner layer of the M4 sample provided comparable attenuation of photons and radiation protection to the thicker M1–M3 samples. The new material is promising as an effective shield of radiation-emitting sources during transportation and long-term storage. Full article
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11 pages, 3226 KiB  
Article
Development of Novel Transparent Radiation Shielding Glasses by BaO Doping in Waste Soda Lime Silica (SLS) Glass
Sustainability 2022, 14(2), 937; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14020937 - 14 Jan 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2166
Abstract
In the current study, BaO was doped in Bi2O3-ZnO-B2O3-SLS glass to develop lead-free radiation shielding glasses and to solve the dark brown of bismuth glass. The melt-quenching method was utilized to fabricate (x) BaO (1 [...] Read more.
In the current study, BaO was doped in Bi2O3-ZnO-B2O3-SLS glass to develop lead-free radiation shielding glasses and to solve the dark brown of bismuth glass. The melt-quenching method was utilized to fabricate (x) BaO (1 − x)[0.3 ZnO 0.2 Bi2O3 0.2 B2O3 0.3 SLS] (where x are 0.01, 0.02, 0.03, 0.04, and 0.05 mol) at 1200 °C. Soda lime silica glass waste (SLS), which is mostly composed of 74.1% SiO2, was used to obtain SiO2. The mass attenuation coefficient (μm) was investigated utilizing X-ray fluorescence (XRF) at 16.61, 17.74, 21.17, and 25.27 keV and narrow beam geometry at 59.54, 662, and 1333 keV. Moreover, the other parameters related to gamma ray shielding properties such as half-value layer (HVL), mean free path (MFP), and effective atomic number (Zeff) were computed depending on μm values. The results indicated that HVL and MFP decreased, whereas μm increased with an increase in BaO concentration. According to these results, it can be concluded that BaO doped in Bi2O3-ZnO-B2O3-SLS glass is a nontoxic, transparent to visible light, and a good shielding material against radiation. Full article
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13 pages, 1168 KiB  
Systematic Review
Systematic Literature Review and Bibliometric Study of Waste Management in Indonesia in the COVID-19 Pandemic Era
Sustainability 2022, 14(5), 2556; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14052556 - 23 Feb 2022
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 4247
Abstract
It is globally known that the COVID-19 pandemic affected all aspects of society, including issues pertaining to health, economic, social, and environmental issues. The pandemic has already continued for two years and counting, and we are now advised to live coexisting with COVID-19 [...] Read more.
It is globally known that the COVID-19 pandemic affected all aspects of society, including issues pertaining to health, economic, social, and environmental issues. The pandemic has already continued for two years and counting, and we are now advised to live coexisting with COVID-19 in the new normal era. During this new normal era, especially in Indonesia, many medical wastes (face masks, gloves, goggles, etc.) and other type of wastes are being generated due to COVID-19. However, the waste profile (waste management or waste handling) and the specific waste distribution in Indonesia during COVID-19 is not clearly understood. Therefore, in this study we perform a systematic literature review and bibliometric analysis of studies published during COVID-19 to describe the aforementioned issues regarding waste management in Indonesia by extracting data from Scopus as a leading indexing service for peer-reviewed publications. From more than 230,000 titles in Scopus regarding COVID-19, there are only 24 titles related to waste management in Indonesia during COVID-19. From the bibliometric analysis of the extracted data from Scopus, it can be observed that there are four clusters of interest, namely (1) medical waste and its processing, (2) COVID-19-related issues, (3) Indonesia and waste management, and (4) solid waste. The study of these issues is essential to obtain not only a clean environment, but also a sustainable future for an Indonesia that is free from COVID-19 and other related diseases in the future. Moreover, the bibliometric analysis also uncovers the research and publication gap for the topic of waste management in Indonesia in the COVID-19 pandemic era. Full article
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