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Reiner Mielke January 15, 2012 02:12PM
How old are these dumps? I am wondering how long it takes for some of these minerals to form in a slag pile.
Alfredo Petrov January 15, 2012 04:13PM
I too am very curious about the speed of formation of secondary minerals in slags. Slags exposed to seawater in Tacoma, Washington state, for about 100 years are well known for their secondary minerals. On roughly 70 year old slags exposed to seawater in Japan I've found material looking quite similar to the Rotem material. Anyone have examples of faster growth?

Climate (temperature and humidity) are probably decisive.
Frank de Wit January 15, 2012 07:42PM
The zinc-factory S.A. de Rothem produced between 1913 and 1967 (source: I have visited the site numerous times to collect the slag minerals, but I don't know how old the slags were on each of the different spots in the area. The process by which the Zinc was produced at Rothem is described in detail (in Dutch) in Fruytier M. (2003): Dilsen-Stokkem, een nieuwe vindplaats en nu bijna verdwenen! Nautilus 2003, 3, 93-118.
Cheers, Frank
Alfredo Petrov January 15, 2012 08:01PM
Then it would seem the secondary minerals must be between 45 < 99 years old?
Reiner Mielke January 15, 2012 10:54PM
Good to know, I thought it might take longer. I was looking through a 100 year old copper slag pile and couldn't find anything of interest, I thought maybe it wasn't old enough but I guess there just isn't anything to be found. :-(
Alfredo Petrov January 15, 2012 11:02PM
Is the pile well-drained, Reiner? I guess availability of water would be critical? (in which case you might want to dig into the bottom of the pile, where it's in contact with the soil under it)
Reiner Mielke January 16, 2012 12:27AM
Hello Alfredo,

Good point, it is well drained, I will have to do some digging maybe I will get lucky.
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