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Acid refining of synthesised alloys within the quaternary system Fe-Si-Ca-Al: effect of ferric ions

Queiroz, A.M.; Margarido, F.; Martins, J.P.
Fonte: Taylor and Francis Publicador: Taylor and Francis
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica
ENG
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585.89395%
A systematic study of synthesis of different chemical composition of alloys within the quaternary Fe-Si-Ca-Al system, versus acid leaching refining using HCl with or without FeCl3 has been undertaken. Such study has the aim of achieving an adequate structural composition of Fe-Si alloys, in order to obtain high purity and fine particle size silicon by acid leaching, at more reduced costs. The experimental results show that an adequate control of Fe/Al and Si/Ca concentration ratios can hinder the formation of tetragonal and orthorhombic FeSi2 phases, and consequently promotes a successful refining of ferro-silicon alloys. The presence of ferric ion influences on a distinct way the rate of removal of Al-Fe-Si and Fe-Al-Si-Ca phases, increasing the first and decreasing the second one. The suitable starting composition which could give the expected results must be the following: 92-94% Si; 3-3.5% Fe; 3.5-4% Al and Ca ≤ 0.5%.

Acid leaching of alloys within the quaternary system Fe-Si-Ca-Al

Margarido, F.; Figueiredo, M.O.; Queiroz, A.M.; Martins, J.P.
Fonte: ACS Publicador: ACS
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica
ENG
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688.4462%
Silicon with high purity and fine particle size can be produced by acid leaching of Fe-Si industrial alloys under the condition that they have adequate chemical composition and structural constitution. Such alloys contain phases that fall within the system Fe-Si-Ca-Al, where the quaternary phase Caalsifer, with aproximate formula (Fe0.8Al0.1 0.1) (Si0.8Ca0.2)2, is found along with several binary and ternary phases (Fe-Si, Ca-Si, Al-Fe-Si, Ca-Al-Si). With the purpose of optimizing the phase, constitution alloys were synthesized within the system Fe-Si-Ca-Al. The results of leaching experiments performed using HCl (150 and 220g/L) at constant temperature (T=102 1 C) and ordinary atmosphere indicate that the Caalsifer plus Al-Fe-Si phases should be maximized whereas the FeSi2 phases should be minimized, by controlling Al/Ca and Fe/Si concentration ratios in the synthesis process.

Leaching of Ni and Cu from mine wastes (tailings and slags) using acid solutions and A. ferrooxidans

Muñoz, A.; Bevilaqua, D.; Garcia, O.
Fonte: Universidade Estadual Paulista Publicador: Universidade Estadual Paulista
Tipo: Conferência ou Objeto de Conferência Formato: 425-428
ENG
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606.22375%
The objective of this work is to evaluate the acidic and biological leaching of tailings containing Ni/Cu from a flotation and smelting plant. Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans, strain LR, was used for bioleaching at pH 1.8 and chemical controls were run parallel to that. The acidic leaching was done within 48 hours at pH 0.5 and 1.0. In the slag inoculated flasks the redox potential was high (600 mV), thus indicating oxidative bacterial activity, however, the obtained results after 15 days showed only around 13% Ni and 8% Cu extractions, which were not different to those of the controls. For the flotation tailings bioleaching extractions were approximately 45% for Ni and 16% for Cu while differing figures were obtained for the chemical controls. These were 30% and 12% respectively. Here we could observe that the presence of bacterial activity led to a higher solubility of Ni. Acid leaching of slag showed higher nickel and copper extractions: 56% and 24% respectively at pH 0.5 and 21% and 11% at pH 1.0. However, the acid consumption was 320 and 150 Kg/ton of slag, respectively, both much higher than in bacterial assays. These results indicated that Ni and Cu solubilization from the slag is acid dependent no matter the redox potential or ferric iron concentration of the leaching solution. For flotation tailings...

Leaching behaviour of a galvanic sludge in sulphuric acid and ammoniacal media

Silva, João Eudes da; Soares, Delfim; Paiva, A. P.; Labrincha, J. A.; Castro, F.
Fonte: Elsevier Publicador: Elsevier
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica
Publicado em //2005 ENG
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397.9318%
Leaching studies of a sludge produced by the physico-chemical treatment of astewaters generated by a Ni/Cr plating plant were carried out in both sulphuric acid and ammoniacal media aiming to decide which of them would be the best treatment for this kind of waste material. The dissolution behaviour of some metals (Cu, Ni, Cr and Zn) was studied in order to assure the best metal recovery conditions in subsequent processes by the use of some separation methods such as solvent extraction and precipitation techniques. Therefore, the study here presented deals with the first chemical stage of an integrated treatment process. For the sulphuric acid leaching, maximal conversions obtained were 88.6% Cu, 98.0% Ni and 99.2% Zn for the following experimental conditions: a 100 g L−1 acid concentration, a 5:1 liquid-to-solid ratio (L/S), a particle size less than 1 mm, a digestion time of 1 h, a stirring speed of 700 rpm (all at room temperature and under atmospheric pressure). As expected, no selectivity was achieved for the sulphuric acid leaching, despite this option yielding much higher metal ion dissolution when compared with that reached by ammoniacal leaching. The use of this latter medium allowed the extraction of Cu and Ni without Cr species...

Leaching behavior of several zinc rich residues in a hydrometallurgical recycling process

Pedrosa, Fátima; Cabral, Marta; Nogueira, C. A.; Margarido, F.
Fonte: Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia Publicador: Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia
Tipo: Conferência ou Objeto de Conferência
Publicado em 10/11/2009 ENG
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497.32035%
The leaching of metals contained in spent Zn-MnO2 batteries and electric arc furnace (EAF) dusts using sulfuric acid solutions was studied, in order to evaluate the feasibility of simultaneous treatment of both wastes by a hydrometallurgical process. In both residues, a substantial quantity of zinc was solubilized (about 100% in batteries and 70-80% in EAF dusts) in diluted acid solutions and room temperature, corresponding to the reaction of zinc oxide species. Other species were more refractory to the chemical attack, namely the manganese (III or IV) oxides in batteries and the zinc ferrite in dusts, requiring higher temperatures (e.g. 90ºC) and higher leachant concentrations. Lead present in EAF dusts was not solubilized in sulfate media, thus remaining in the leach residue. Results seem to confirm the possibility of treatment of both zinc-containing residues by the same hydrometallurgical process, eventually involving two leaching stages – diluted acid leaching and hot acid leaching – followed by solution purification through iron precipitation and Zn/Mn separation and recovery. Concerning lead, a second leaching circuit in chloride media could be developed for its potential recovery.

Leaching studies for metals recovery from printed circuit boards scrap

Oliveira, Paula C.; Cabral, Marta; Taborda, F. Charters; Margarido, F.; Nogueira, C. A.
Fonte: Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia Publicador: Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia
Tipo: Conferência ou Objeto de Conferência
Publicado em 24/06/2009 ENG
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491.4977%
In this paper, the leaching behavior of the major metals present in printed circuit boards waste is evaluated, aiming at its recycling by hydrometallurgy. Several leachants were compared (sulfuric, hydrochloric and nitric acids, at 2 M H+ concentration), at temperatures of 25ºC and 90ºC and 4 hours of reaction time. Sulfuric acid leaching was not very promising concerning metals dissolution being only effective for iron. Hydrochloric acid allowed the leaching up to 60% of tin and about 50% of lead, as well as the iron. Nitric acid was the most efficient leachant due to its oxidizing properties. Recoveries of 90% or more for copper, iron, nickel and zinc were achieved at the higher temperature. Lead was also dissolved (up to 80%), as well as silver (more than 70%). These results show that the hydrometallurgical recovery of most of the metals present in PCB’s scrap is a technically feasible alternative that shall be considered and evaluated.

Recycling of exhausted batteries and EAF dusts by leaching with several aqueous media

Pedrosa, Fátima; Cabral, Marta; Margarido, F.; Nogueira, C. A.
Fonte: Trans Tech Publications Publicador: Trans Tech Publications
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica
Publicado em //2013 ENG
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502.5766%
Zinc is a base metal present in several products of general use, and therefore found in numerous residues and end-of-life products. The two main sources of zinc containing wastes are spent Zn-MnO2 portable batteries and electric arc furnace (EAF) dusts from steelmaking plants. The recovery of metals from these residues by appropriate recycling processes is mandatory due to environmental, economic and resource conservation issues. Concerning the similar composition of both residues, their simultaneous processing can be envisaged. The research herein described consists on the hydrometallurgical treatment of zinc bearing waste, where several leaching routes for solubilising metals, mainly zinc, are studied. The leaching of shredded batteries and EAF dusts was carried out using three different leaching solutions containing sulfuric acid, hydrochloric acid or ammonium chloride. The acid leaching of zinc in the oxide form (zincite) using both acids, was very efficient and quick, allowing the recovery of practically all Zn contained in batteries and about of 80% of Zn in dusts. Regarding to the leaching media the behaviour of lead oxides present in dusts was different, being insoluble with H2SO4 and partially soluble with HCl (40-90% yield...

Estudo comparativo entre sílica obtida por lixívia ácida da casca de arroz e sílica obtida por tratamento térmico da cinza de casca de arroz

Della,Viviana Possamai; Hotza,Dachamir; Junkes,Janaína Accordi; Oliveira,Antonio Pedro Novaes de
Fonte: Sociedade Brasileira de Química Publicador: Sociedade Brasileira de Química
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/12/2006 PT
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483.94152%
A comparison between silica by acid leaching of rice husk (RH) and silica obtained from thermal treatment of rice husk ash (RHA) is presented. The best leaching results were obtained using 10% hydrochloric acid followed by washing with water. The alternative method, calcination of RHA at 700 ºC for 6 h followed by grinding for 80 min, was more effective. Silica obtained from RH was about 97% amorphous, had a 17.37 µm mean particle size, and a specific surface area of 296 m²/g. On the other hand, for silica obtained from RHA the values were about 95% amorphous material 0.68 µm, and 81 m²/g.

Isolamento do tungstênio da volframita da mina de Igarapé Manteiga (Rondônia - Brasil) por lixiviação ácida

Paulino,Jéssica Frontino; Afonso,Julio Carlos; Mantovano,José Luiz; Vianna,Cláudio Augusto; Cunha,José Waldemar Silva Dias da
Fonte: Sociedade Brasileira de Química Publicador: Sociedade Brasileira de Química
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/01/2012 PT
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473.44883%
We report results of the efficiency of tungsten extraction from wolframite concentrate (containing 61.5 wt % WO3) from the Igarapé Manteiga mine (state of Rondônia, Brazil) through acid leaching with strong mineral acids at 100 ºC and 400 rpm for 2-4 h. HCl yielded insoluble matter containing the highest WO3 content (90 wt %). This solid was dissolved in concentrated NH3(aq) at 25 ºC and the insoluble matter filtrated. The filtrate was slowly evaporated. 70 wt % of the tungsten present in the starting concentrate material was recovered as ammonium paratungstate (APT).

On the acidity and/or basicity of USY zeolites after basic and acid treatment

Calsavara,V.; Machado,N. R. C. F.; Bernardi Jr,J. L.; Sousa-Aguiar,E. F.
Fonte: Brazilian Society of Chemical Engineering Publicador: Brazilian Society of Chemical Engineering
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/03/2000 EN
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585.89395%
The isopropanol decomposition reaction was used to evaluate the catalytic activity of ultrastable (USY) zeolites with different degrees of dealumination, treated in strongly alkaline medium at various temperatures and contact times. This treatment resulted in the reinsertion of non-framework aluminium, a result of the ultrastabilization process. The samples obtained were also submitted to an acid treatment, leaching the non-framework aluminium that had not been reinserted. The results obtained at 723K showed a large reduction in the acidic activity of the alkaline-treated zeolite, as the treatment conditions became more severe (the longer the treatment time or the higher the temperature, the higher the degree of dealumination). On the other hand, treated samples displayed some isopropanol dehydrogenation activity (basic sites). However, this activity was not very significant and did not depend on the alkaline treatment or ultrastabilization conditions used. The effect of reaction temperature and acid leaching on activity is also shown.

A statistical approach to the experimental design of the sulfuric acid leaching of gold-copper ore

Mendes,F.D.; Martins,A.H.
Fonte: Brazilian Society of Chemical Engineering Publicador: Brazilian Society of Chemical Engineering
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/09/2003 EN
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595.654%
The high grade of copper in the Igarapé Bahia (Brazil) gold-copper ore prevents the direct application of the classic cyanidation process. Copper oxides and sulfides react with cyanides in solution, causing a high consumption of leach reagent and thereby raising processing costs and decreasing recovery of gold. Studies have showm that a feasible route for this ore would be a pretreatment for copper minerals removal prior to the cyanidation stage. The goal of this experimental work was to study the experimental conditions required for copper removal from Igarapé Bahia gold-copper ore by sulfuric acid leaching by applying a statistical approach to the experimental design. By using the Plackett Burman method, it was possible to select the variables that had the largest influence on the percentage of copper extracted at the sulfuric acid leaching stage. These were temperature of leach solution, stirring speed, concentration of sulfuric acid in the leach solution and particle size of the ore. The influence of the individual effects of these variables and their interactions on the experimental response were analyzed by applying the replicated full factorial design method. Finally, the selected variables were optimized by the ascending path statistical method...

A mathematical model for isothermal heap and column leaching

de Andrade Lima,L.R.P.
Fonte: Brazilian Society of Chemical Engineering Publicador: Brazilian Society of Chemical Engineering
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/09/2004 EN
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487.4425%
Leaching occurs in metals recovery, in contaminated soil washing, and in many natural processes, such as fertilizer dissolution and rock weathering. This paper presents a model developed to simulate the transient evolution of the dissolved chemical species in the heap and column isothermal leaching processes. In this model, the solid bed is numerically divided into plane layers; the recovery of the chemical species, the enrichment of the pregnant leach solution, and the residual concentration of the leaching agent are calculated by interactions among the layers. The solution flow in the solid bed is assumed as unidirectional without dispersion, and the solid-fluid reaction is described by a diffusive control model that is integrated analytically for each time step. The data set used in the model include physical-chemical, geometrical, and operational variables, such as: leachable chemical species content, leaching agent flow rate and concentration, particles size distribution, solution residence time in the solid bed, and solid bed length, weight and irrigated area. The results for two case studies, namely, an industrial gold heap leaching and a pilot column copper acid leaching, showed that the model successful predict the general features of the process time evolution.

Effect of salt leaching on PCL and PLGA(50/50) resorbable scaffolds

Barbanti,Samuel Hilsdorf; Zavaglia,Cecília Amélia Carvalho; Duek,Eliana Aparecida de Rezende
Fonte: ABM, ABC, ABPol Publicador: ABM, ABC, ABPol
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/03/2008 EN
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490.3986%
The use of porous bioresorbable scaffolds in the field of tissue engineering represents an alternative for the treatment of lesions and losses of biological tissues. This work evaluates the leaching salt effect of two different processes and polymers. Dense and porous scaffolds were prepared with poly(epson-caprolactone) (PCL) and poly(D,L-lactic acid-co-glycolic acid) (50/50) (PLGA50) by casting and melting compression process. Sodium citrate with particles sizes of 180-250 µm of diameter was used as porogen. The dense and porous samples were immersed in distilled water for 30 hours and evaluated for pH and mass variations, by scanning electronic microscopy (SEM), differential scanning calorimetric (DSC) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The results of the analyses showed that the inclusion of the salt and leaching process did not affect the properties of the scaffold, indicating that the method is useful to make porous scaffolds to be potentially used in tissue engineering.

The kinetics of pyrite and elemental sulfur reactions during nitric acid pre-oxidation of refractory gold ores / by James R. Flatt.

Flatt, James R. (James Robert)
Fonte: Universidade de Adelaide Publicador: Universidade de Adelaide
Tipo: Tese de Doutorado Formato: 406818 bytes; application/pdf
Publicado em //1996 EN
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462.64688%
The focus of the thesis is to investigate the fundamental kinetics of the pyrite-nitric acid system. Particular attention is paid to the formation and oxidation of elemental sulfur. The study aims to elucidate the chemistry of the sulfide oxidation and of elemental sulfur formation and oxidation.; Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Adelaide, Dept. of Chemical Engineering, 1997?; Bibliography: leaves 192-193.; ix, 214, ix leaves : ill. ; 30 cm.

Comparison of processes for lithium recovery from lepidolite by H2SO4 digestion or HCl leaching

Nogueira, C. A.; Margarido, F.; Vieceli, N.; Durão, F.; Guimarães, C.
Fonte: Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia Publicador: Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia
Tipo: Conferência ou Objeto de Conferência
Publicado em //2014 ENG
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496.97656%
Lithium is becoming a strategic metal due to its important applications in secondary battery electrodes used in electronic appliances and also in electric traction vehicles. Lithium primary resources are brines and rock minerals, the former being nowadays almost exclusively used in the production of lithium commodities. With the expected increase in lithium demand, the development of competitive technologies for recovery lithium from ores like pegmatites is getting imperative. The high energy and reagents consumption in processing minerals is an issue that should be considered. This paper presents some results on the comparison of two acid treatment routes for lepidolite, the H2SO4 digestion and HCl leaching. Before both chemical treatments, lepidolite was calcined at 800oC and was transformed in a more reactive species, ƒÀ-spodumene. The H2SO4 digestion at 175oC (followed by water leaching) allowed 88% Li recovery into the solution in 30 min. By the contrary, the HCl leaching process carried out at 90oC also achieved similar yields but only after 4 h of reaction. In both cases, an acid excess was used, but clearly higher for the essays with HCl. The H2SO4 digestion process was also advantageous in what concerns to selectivity over other contained metals. Al...

Leaching of rare earth elements from bentonite clay

van der Watt,J.G; Waanders,F.B
Fonte: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy Publicador: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/04/2012 EN
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492.67637%
Due to increasing concerns of global rare earth element shortfalls in the near future, possible alternative sources of rare earth elements have recently become of economic interest. One such alternative is decanting acid mine water originating primarily from abandoned old mines in the Witwatersrand region of the Republic of South Africa. In this study, a novel way of rare earth element removal from the acid mine drainage was employed, making use of bentonite clay, which has very good adsorbent properties, as a rare earth element carrier material. The process can be economically viable only, if the elements can be selectively removed from the bentonite clay carrier material so as to yield reusable clay. Acid leaching was proposed to liberate the adsorbed rare earth elements from the bentonite clay. Accordingly, acid leaching experiments were performed to study the desorption of three commonly-found rare earth elements, namely neodymium, samarium, and dysprosium, from bentonite clay in the presence of sulphuric and hydrochloric acid. It was established that the three rare earth element species could be selectively removed as a group from iron, magnesium, and manganese metals through the careful manipulation of the pH. An investigation into the kinetic aspects of the rare earth element desorption process from the bentonite clay was also undertaken. The applicability of various kinetic models such as zero-order...

Leachability of nitrided ilmenite in hydrochloric acid

Swanepoel,J.J.; van Vuuren,D.S.; Heydenrych,M.
Fonte: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy Publicador: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/01/2011 EN
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582.9668%
Titanium nitride in upgraded nitrided ilmenite (bulk of iron removed) can selectively be chlorinated to produce titanium tetrachloride. Except for iron, most other components present during this low temperature (ca. 200°C) chlorination reaction will not react with chlorine. It is therefore necessary to remove as much iron as possible from the nitrided ilmenite. Hydrochloric acid leaching is a possible process route to remove metallic iron from nitrided ilmenite without excessive dissolution of species like titanium nitride and calcium oxide. Calcium oxide dissolution results in unrecoverable acid consumption. The leachability of nitrided ilmenite in hydrochloric acid was evaluated by determining the dissolution of species like aluminium, calcium, titanium and magnesium in a batch leach reactor for 60 minutes at 90°C under reflux conditions. The hydrochloric acid concentration (11%, 18% and 25%), initial acid-to-iron mole ratio (2:1, 2.5:1 and 3.3:1), and solid-to-liquid mass ratio (1:8.33 to 1:2.13) were varied. The results indicate that a hydrochloric acid concentration of 25 wt% supplied in a 2:1 acid-to-iron mole ratio would produce the most favourable upgraded nitrided ilmenite product. The dissolution of iron in this solution reached 97 per cent after only 60 minutes. The total dissolution of calcium and titanium species was 0.01 and 0.11 wt% respectively. Hydrochloric acid can therefore be used as lixiviant to remove metallic iron from nitrided ilmenite.

Atmospheric oxidative and non-oxidative leaching of Ni-Cu matte by acidified ferric chloride solution

Sekhukhune,L.M.; Ntuli,F.; Muzenda,E.
Fonte: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy Publicador: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/05/2014 EN
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488.4909%
The atmospheric leaching of copper-bearing matte by acidic ferric chloride solution was studied at the laboratory scale. The aim was to achieve maximum copper and nickel recovery by investigating the mechanisms of leaching, as well as identifying the effect of temperature, and concentration of ferric chloride and oxygen. Djurleite (Cu1.96S), hazelwoodite (Ni3S2), and Ni alloy were the primary phases detected in the matte. The quantitative composition of the matte was Cu 31%, Ni 50%, S 13%. Fe and Co constituted 2%, with platinum group metals (PGMs) accounting for 0.5%. A maximum nickel extraction of 98% was achieved using two-stage oxidative leaching at 90°C and 11 g/L Fe3+ as compared to 65% under non-oxidative conditions. A copper extraction of 99% was achieved in the first 45 minutes using two-stage non-oxidative leaching, and copper was recovered from solution by cementation. Three processes took place simultaneously throughout the leaching process, namely: dissolution, cementation/ metathesis, and oxidation. The leaching process was found to be diffusion-controlled.

Acid leaching of heavy metals from bentonite clay, used in the cleaning of acid mine drainage

Enslin,F.; van der Mey,L.; Waanders,F.
Fonte: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy Publicador: Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/04/2010 EN
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601.34%
Heavy metals and sulphates in acid mine drainage (AMD) can be adsorbed onto bentonite clay, leaving clean water and a heavy metal loaded clay precipitate as products. Due to the toxicity of heavy metals, the clay could not be disposed of safely in the past. A method was thus required to remove the heavy metal content from the clay. Acid leaching was proposed to liberate the heavy metals from the loaded clay. Sulphuric, nitric and hydrochloric acid were considered as lixiviants. Loaded clay samples were leached over a range of pH values from 1 to 3.5 to identify an optimum leaching condition. From the results it was found that metals can be recovered from loaded bentonite clay by means of acid leaching and the optimum pH for heavy metal liberation was found to be 2.5, with uranium as an exception, being optimally leached at a pH of 3. This allows for the possibility of selective leaching. Furthermore, X-ray diffraction analyses indicated that the clay structure did not deteriorate significantly during acid leaching, suggesting that the bentonite could be reused. The treatment of AMD with bentonite clay, and subsequent acid leaching of the clay, is a sustainable solution, and current outcomes could possibly lead to industrial implementation of the process during water purifying and metal recovery from waste streams.

The production and use of citric acid for the removal of potassium from the iron ore concentrate of the Sishen Iron Ore Mine, South Africa

Williams,Peter J.; Cloete,Thomas E.
Fonte: South African Journal of Science Publicador: South African Journal of Science
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica Formato: text/html
Publicado em 01/04/2010 EN
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500.8856%
The depletion of the richer iron ore worldwide has made it necessary to process lower quality iron ore. Certain substances, such as potassium, contained within the lower quality iron ore, have a detrimental effect on the smelting process during steel manufacturing. Therefore, international steel-making companies charge penalties when purchasing iron ore concentrates containing high concentrations of potassium. To date, lower quality iron ore has been blended with high quality iron ore in an attempt to alleviate the potassium concentrations in the export iron ore; however, the ratio of low quality iron ore to high quality iron ore is increasing, thereby becoming an escalating problem within the economic functioning of the Sishen Iron Ore Mine. It has, therefore, become necessary to develop an economically viable and environmentally friendly process to reduce the high potassium concentrations contained in the iron ore concentrate of the Sishen Iron Ore Mine. In this study, we compared solid substrate and submerged fermentation using Aspergillus niger for the production of citric acid, which is used for the chemical leaching of potassium from the iron ore concentrate. It was found that submerged fermentation proved to be more economical and efficient...