In March of 2019, an MT-100 was installed in an environmental laboratory stationed at an abandoned mine care and maintenance project in Faro, Yukon Territories, Canada. The MT-100 is being used as a tool for performing wet chemistry analysis on samples taken around the mine site, as well as surrounding watersheds. Samples include wastewater, groundwater, and surface water.
The Faro Mine was once the largest lead-zinc mine in Canada, operating for almost 30 years before closing in 1998 due to bankruptcy. Responsibility for the mine officially passed to the governments of Yukon and Canada in 2003, upon which planning for remediation and restoration of the site begun. Since then, there have been numerous minor projects on the site, including:
- Construction of a sulphide cell to protect surrounding environment from further contamination
- Replacement of old water treatment plant with new state-of-the-art facility
- Installation of seepage collection system for nearby natural creek
- Temporary diversion of water systems around areas contributing to contamination
The main stages of site remediation are set to begin by 2022. In order to prepare for the beginning of this monumental project, a vast amount of water sampling must take place to identify sources of contamination, quantify them, and monitor the extent of remediation both in these initial planning phases, and eventually during the more intensive tasks involving removal of contaminants. Until recently, a vast majority of these water samples were being performed manually by the same technicians tasked with collecting the samples. With limited resources available, this posed a strain on the limited resources of the environmental team, especially with the inevitable increase of sample load as operations on site intensify.
The installation of the MANTECH MT-100 will prove to be a valuable asset over the coming years by automating a large amount of the wet chemistry performed in the environmental laboratory. The MT-100 installed in their lab can perform automated analysis of pH, Alkalinity, Ammonia, Conductivity, Turbidity, and Color on sets of water samples, including combinations of parameters out of a single sample. This not only frees up great amount of time for their lab personnel, but also ensures quality results are delivered quickly, efficiently and using as little sample/reagents as possible. All the operators have to do is pour the samples, select the chemistry parameters to measure, and click Start!