Characterization of Post-Mining Soil and Solid Waste from Silica Sand Purification

Bernadetha Susianti, Idaa Warmadewanthi*, Bieby Voijant Tangahu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Post-mining soil and solid waste from the silica sand refining industry is widespread and the potential long-term impact of toxic metals and metalloids is a significant and under-appreciated issue. This study presents the characteristics of post-mining soil and solid waste resulting from silica sand purification to observe its physical, chemical, and biological composition. Analysis of the physical properties was carried out with reference to ASTM 112-10 and the results show that post-mining soil contains 36.95% sand, 18.80% clay, and 42.74% silt, with coefficients of permeability and porosity of 0.69×10-6 cm·s-1 and 35.84%, respectively. Meanwhile, the solid waste contains 43.35% sand, 35.96% clay, and 20.68% silt with coefficients of permeability and porosity of 1.49×10-6 cm·s-1 and 51.12%. The overall mineralogy and morphology of both samples showed that they have the same chemical composition as gehlenite (Ca2Al2SiO7), spinel (MgAl2O4), akermanite (Ca2MgSi2O7), monticellite (CaMgSiO4), aluminum oxide (Al2O3), magnetite (Fe3O4), and hematite (Fe2O3) supports this data. The chemical composition of both samples is SiO2, Al2O3, CaO, and MgO, but the post-mining soil has lower heavy metal and nutrient contents compared to solid waste. Meanwhile, solid waste has a high content of heavy metals and nutrients due to washing and bonding from the silica sand purification process. The abundance of bacteria (Colony Forming Unit) for the 10-4 and 10-5 dilutions in post-mining soil was 1.59×103 and not detected, while in the solid waste, 4.10×105 and 1.64×105 were found, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)277-289
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Ecological Engineering
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Characteristic
  • Post-mining
  • Purification
  • Soil
  • Solid waste


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