Fungal deterioration of barrier concrete used in nuclear waste disposal

M. Fomina, V. S. Podgorsky, S. V. Olishevska, V. M. Kadoshnikov, I. R. Pisanska, S. Hillier, Geoffrey Gadd

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    Abstract

    Fungal biogeochemical activity over a long-term scale may have negative environmental consequences for the management of barrier materials used in nuclear waste disposal. Fungal deterioration of barrier concrete was studied in microcosms simulating a heterogeneous environment with an external source of nutrients for the fungi. Fungi successfully colonized barrier concrete, generally avoiding granite aggregates, and biochemically (by excretion of protons and ligands) and biomechanically deteriorated the concrete. Fungi dissolved the cement matrix leaching structural elements and accumulating them within the fungal biofilm and associated microenvironment. Oxalate-excreting Aspergillus niger formed abundant calcium oxalate crystals on the concrete and encrusting fungal hyphae.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)643-653
    Number of pages11
    JournalGeomicrobiology Journal
    Volume24
    Issue number7-8
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2007

    Keywords

    • fungi
    • concrete
    • biodeterioration
    • calcium
    • silicon
    • oxalate
    • WEATHERED PEGMATITIC GRANITE
    • PENICILLIUM-OCHRO-CHLORON
    • COMMUNITY STRUCTURE
    • ASPERGILLUS-NIGER
    • COPPER UPTAKE
    • TOXIC METALS
    • OXALIC-ACID
    • BIODETERIORATION
    • CEMENT
    • MICROORGANISMS

    Cite this

    Fomina, M., Podgorsky, V. S., Olishevska, S. V., Kadoshnikov, V. M., Pisanska, I. R., Hillier, S., & Gadd, G. (2007). Fungal deterioration of barrier concrete used in nuclear waste disposal. Geomicrobiology Journal, 24(7-8), 643-653. https://doi.org/10.1080/01490450701672240