Lithium slag and fly ash-based binder for cemented fine tailings backfill

Yan He, Qiusong Chen, Chongchong Qi, Q. Zhang, Chongchun Xiao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)


This research work was an exploration of the feasibility of utilizing a lithium slag (LS) and fly ash (FA)-based binder for cemented fine tailings backfill (CFTB). Extensive experiments were conducted with different combinations of LS and ordinary Portland cement (OPC), along with FA as an additive. The unconfined compressive strength (UCS), micromorphology and slump values were analyzed. The results showed that (i) the LS and FA had a significant influence on the strength of binders. The OPC-LS-FA ratio of 2:1:1 appeared to be optimal with the highest strength and was referred as the LS and FA-based binder (LFB). (ii) The LFB significantly improved the UCS of the CFTB. The UCS values of CFTB specimens curing for 7,28 and 56 days reached 0.95 MPa,2.28 MPa and 3.37 MPa, respectively, with a 10 wt% content of LFB. The strength satisfied the strength requirement of backfill for supporting the surrounding rock of stopes in the Yinshan lead-zinc mine (0.8 MPa, 2.0 MPa, 3.0 MPa). (iii) The pore-filling effect of the secondary hydration products, which was mainly produced by LFB, played a significant role in the early stage (<7 days), while the pozzolanic activity worked mostly in the mid-long period (>28 days). (iv) The LFB reduced the slump value of CFTB slurry by 2.6%–9.4% compared with OPC when the mass concentration increased from 58% to 64%, which was acceptable to satisfy the requirements of better fluidity and less transportation resistance in the Yinshan lead-zinc mine. Therefore, the LFB could be utilized as an alternative cementitious material for CFTB, which also provides a safe and economical approach to recycle LS and FA in an underground mine.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109282
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2019

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