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|A study of the passive treatment system for Hilton minewater revealed that it consists of four main process steps. The water, which contains soluble and particulate iron and zinc and is supersaturated with CO , is pumped to the surface and then passes throuqh a degassinq unit into settling ponds where larger particles of iron hydroxide, containing some adsorbed zinc, can settle out. The still turbid supernatant is pumped to the top of a hill, from where it is allowed to trickle in a broad sheet, releasing CO , towards an earthen channel in the valley below. Consequently the pArises from around 6 to 7.5. This in turn promotes further decrease in the concentration of soluble zinc by increased adsorption of zinc on to iron hydroxide particles. The channel then transports the water to the third process in the system - a 53 ML pond acting primarily as a flocculation-sedimentation basin. The clarified water overflows into a second channel, downstream of the pond, which constitutes the fourth process in the system. Here, copious quantities of filamentous algae further reduce zinc concentrations to acceptable levels before the water is collected for recycle into mine operations. The work reported here represents a detailed study of this system and describes the optimisation of the operation of each of the individual steps involved.|