Next Article in Journal
Preparation of Silica-Alumina Nanoparticles via Blast-Furnace Slag Dissolution in Low-Concentration Acetic Acid for Carbonation
Previous Article in Journal
REE Incorporation into Calcite Individual Crystals as One Time Spike Addition
Article Menu
Issue 11 (November) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Minerals 2017, 7(11), 205; doi:10.3390/min7110205

Investigation of Enhanced Leaching of Lithium from α-Spodumene Using Hydrofluoric and Sulfuric Acid

School of Minerals Processing and Bioengineering, Central South University, Changsha 410083, China
Institute of Chemical Technologies, College of Chemical Engineering, Fuzhou University, Fuzhou 350108, China
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 August 2017 / Revised: 11 October 2017 / Accepted: 25 October 2017 / Published: 27 October 2017
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [16732 KB, uploaded 6 November 2017]   |  


An effective method using hydrofluoric and sulfuric acid was proposed to enhance the leaching of lithium from α-spodumene, without calcination that is subjected to 1000 °C for phase transformation. The thermodynamic feasibility of the reactions was firstly verified. Dissolution conditions were tested to maximize the leaching efficiency of lithium and with efficient utilization of hydrofluoric acid (HF) served as evaluation criteria. The results showed that 96% of lithium could be transferred into lixivium with an ore/HF/H2SO4 ratio of 1:3:2 (g/mL/mL), at 100 °C for 3 h. Due to the fact that HF molecules were the main reaction form, the dissolution behaviors were theoretically represented and investigated by dissolution in HF/H2SO4. When combined with chemical elements analyses and characterizations, the results of the dissolution behaviors revealed that α-spodumene and albite were preferentially dissolved over quartz. Insoluble fluoroaluminates, such as AlF3, cryolite (Na3AlF6) and cryolithionite (Na3Li3Al2F12), were generated and might be further partially dissolved by H2SO4. Fluorosilicates, such as K2SiF6, Na2SiF6, or KNaSiF6, were also generated as a part of the insoluble residues. This work provides fundamental insight into the role of HF/H2SO4 played in the dissolution of α-spodumene, and sheds light on a novel and promising process to efficiently extract lithium. View Full-Text
Keywords: α-spodumene; hydrofluoric acid; sulfuric acid; dissolution behavior; lithium leaching α-spodumene; hydrofluoric acid; sulfuric acid; dissolution behavior; lithium leaching

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Supplementary material

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Guo, H.; Kuang, G.; Wang, H.; Yu, H.; Zhao, X. Investigation of Enhanced Leaching of Lithium from α-Spodumene Using Hydrofluoric and Sulfuric Acid. Minerals 2017, 7, 205.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Minerals EISSN 2075-163X Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top