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1. University “Babes-Bolyai” Cluj-Napoca, Extention St. George, str. Stadionului 14, Sf. Gheorghe 520050, Romania
2. Chemi Ceramic F Ltd, str. Ciucului 163, St. George 520036, Romania
3. Technical University of Cluj-Napoca ,str. Memorandului 28, Cluj-Napoca, Romania


PLUMEE, Number 1, Volume I


Issue No. 1 - Volume 3(2013)
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On the 4th of October, 2010, a strange environmental accident has happened, which was the largest ecological disaster which has shaken Hungary this century. On that day in Ajka (which is situated 160 kilometers south-west of the capital, Budapest) the reservoir of red mud from the Alumina Plant has deteriorated. Due to the fact that over 1 million m3 of red mud flooded the surrounding villages, Hungary has declared a state of emergency in three countries. With its disastrous human and environmental consequences, no wonder this event is considered to be a catastrophic one [1]. As we know, red mud is a bauxite residue, and it is a 2nd rank hazardous material due to its pH = 11.5-13. Between 1965 and 2000 a similar factory functioned in Oradea and Tulcea, which can be found in Romania. The factory from Oradea annually produced 240.000 tons of alumina for ALRO Slatina. Then this factory was sold to the Russian Concern Ruskii Alumini. Because he didn’t find it profitable, he closed it permanently in 2006 [2]. Today, the factory of Tulcea, called Alum Tulcea SA, is still functioning. In 2009 it restarted its activity after a refurbishment and modernization program. From the production of 1 ton of alumina results 1.5-2 tones of red mud. In Oradea, during the four decades of functioning, a huge quantity of red mud resulted. This is deposited on 42 hectares of landfills. Today, this amount of red mud still exists, and it is still unused, which represents a serious threat to the ecosystem. It appears that the water of rain diluted the concentration of the alkalis, and a pH of 9.5 was determined. This doesn’t fall anymore into the category of dangerous substances. In order to revaluate the red mud, it would be essential to find a cheap and efficient method of neutralizing, ex. in the vinegar or milk industry. And through a proper management, red mud could also be an important raw material for some construction materials. Thereby the revaluation of red mud could contribute to environmental protection.


alumina, red mud, wastes, ecological catastrophe, building materials.

Code [ID]:

PLUMEE201301V01S01A0016 [0003972]

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