Effect of Additives on Chalcopyrite Leaching
Description:Experiments were conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Mines to verify enhancements due to chloride and surfactant additions in the leaching system of chalcopyrite with ferric sulfate and sulfuric acid. A statistical experimental design was used and equipment was designed to eliminate contributions from changes in solution electrochemical potential during the course of the measurements. Results confirmed that chloride additions increased chalcopyrite leaching by as much as 94 pct over the electrochemical potential versus hydrogen electrode range of 630 to 750 mV at pH 1.7 and 50°C. Total iron concentration had no effect over the range of 1 to 5 g/L. The effect of surfactant addition was less well defined. While additions of LA 790 (a polyoxyethylene lauryl ether) resulted in increased copper leaching in several of the tests, the differences were too small to be statistically significant. No interaction effect could be verified.
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