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Minerals 2016, 6(4), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/min6040128

Experiences and Future Challenges of Bioleaching Research in South Korea

1
Department of Mineral Resources and Energy Engineering, Chonbuk National University, 567, Baekje-daero, Deokjin-gu, Jeonju, Jeonbuk 54896, Korea
2
Department of Process Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John’s, NL A1B 3X5, Canada
3
Geotechnics and Recycling Technology Division, Institute of Mine Reclamation Corporation, 2, Segye-ro, Wonju-si, Gangwon-do 26464, Korea
4
Research & Development, EP Minerals, 9785 Gateway Dr., Suite 1000, Reno, NV 89521, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Anna H. Kaksonen
Received: 1 October 2016 / Revised: 25 November 2016 / Accepted: 28 November 2016 / Published: 2 December 2016
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Abstract

This article addresses the state of the art of bioleaching research published in South Korean Journals. Our research team reviewed the available articles registered in the Korean Citation Index (KCI, Korean Journal Database) addressing the relevant aspects of bioleaching. We systematically categorized the target metal sources as follows: mine tailings, electronic waste, mineral ores and metal concentrates, spent catalysts, contaminated soil, and other materials. Molecular studies were also addressed in this review. The classification provided in the present manuscript details information about microbial species, parameters of operation (e.g., temperature, particle size, pH, and process length), and target metals to compare recoveries among the bioleaching processes. The findings show an increasing interest in the technology from research institutes and mineral processing-related companies over the last decade. The current research trends demonstrate that investigations are mainly focused on determining the optimum parameters of operations for different techniques and minor applications at the industrial scale, which opens the opportunity for greater technological developments. An overview of bioleaching of each metal substrate and opportunities for future research development are also included. View Full-Text
Keywords: bioleaching; bioremediation; review; waste treatment; metal recovery; South Korea bioleaching; bioremediation; review; waste treatment; metal recovery; South Korea
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Borja, D.; Nguyen, K.A.; Silva, R.A.; Park, J.H.; Gupta, V.; Han, Y.; Lee, Y.; Kim, H. Experiences and Future Challenges of Bioleaching Research in South Korea. Minerals 2016, 6, 128.

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