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ProMine product iron oxide pigment tested on rail wagons for corrosion protection

Co-operation between Vattenfall and ProMine partners G.E.O.S. and WOLA utilizes by-product from mine water

Vattenfall is the first industrial enduser to test the corrosion resistant coatings based on pigments from schwertmannite extracted from the Nochten lignite mine water. The schwertmannite corrosion resistant coatings, developed within the ProMine project, will be applied on the rail wagons that are used for the daily transport of coal to a power plant providing quality protection from the constant exposure to all weather conditions in a year-round operation.

Photo: Colour produced by WOLA based on Nochten Red and used for the application on the coal wagon.

Photo: Colour produced by WOLA based on Nochten Red and used for the application on the coal wagon.

The success story starts with the engineering and consulting company G.E.O.S. which developed the innovative technology of natural microbial iron oxidation within the process of mine water treatment. During this process, microbial iron oxidation results in the formation of schwertmannite which is processed to high quality iron oxide pigments. These pigments then serve as the basis for the production of corrosion resistant coatings by the paint producer WOLA GmbH.

Photos: Backside of the coal wagon during application of the coatings (left) and coal wagon after application of the coatings (right).

Photos: Backside of the coal wagon during application of the coatings (left) and coal wagon after application of the coatings (right).

The mine water processed to produce schwertmannite is from the Nochten mine in Germany, which is operated by Vattenfall, the same company who is now the end user of the corrosion resistant coatings. The raw material cycle of extraction, separation and utilization of the recovered iron, is closed within the mine itself and a new viable product is obtained.

The pilot plant for schwertmannite production in Tzschelln will be operated beyond the ProMine project and provide a significant experience in the industrial extraction and utilization of schwertmannite.

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