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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceArticle

Counter-Current Leaching of Low-Grade Laterites with Hydrochloric Acid and Proposed Purification Options of Pregnant Solution

1
Department Mineral Resources Engineering, Technical University Crete, 73100 Chania, Greece
2
School of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, 15780 Zografos, Greece
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2018, 8(12), 599; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8120599
Received: 22 November 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Hydro- and Biohydrometallurgy)
A hydrochloric acid hydrometallurgical process was evaluated for Ni and Co extraction from a low-grade saprolitic laterite. The main characteristics of the process were (i) the application of a counter-current mode of operation as the main leaching step (CCL), and (ii) the treatment of pregnant leach solution (PLS) with a series of simple precipitation steps. It was found that, during CCL, co-dissolution of Fe was maintained at very low levels, i.e., about 0.6%, which improved the effectiveness of the subsequent PLS purification step. The treatment of PLS involved an initial precipitation step for the removal of trivalent metals, Fe, Al, and Cr, using Mg(OH)2. The process steps that followed aimed at separating Ni and Co from Mn and the alkaline earths Mg and Ca, by a combination of repetitive oxidative precipitation and dissolution steps. Magnesium and calcium remained in the aqueous phase, Mn was removed as a solid residue of Mn(III)–Mn(IV) oxides, while Ni and Co were recovered as a separate aqueous stream. It was found that the overall Ni and Co recoveries were 40% and 38%, respectively. About 45% of Ni and 37% of Co remained in the leach residue, while 15% Ni and 20% Co were lost in the Mn oxides. View Full-Text
Keywords: low-grade saprolitic laterite; counter-current leaching; pregnant leach solution; purification low-grade saprolitic laterite; counter-current leaching; pregnant leach solution; purification
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mystrioti, C.; Papassiopi, N.; Xenidis, A.; Komnitsas, K. Counter-Current Leaching of Low-Grade Laterites with Hydrochloric Acid and Proposed Purification Options of Pregnant Solution. Minerals 2018, 8, 599. https://doi.org/10.3390/min8120599

AMA Style

Mystrioti C, Papassiopi N, Xenidis A, Komnitsas K. Counter-Current Leaching of Low-Grade Laterites with Hydrochloric Acid and Proposed Purification Options of Pregnant Solution. Minerals. 2018; 8(12):599. https://doi.org/10.3390/min8120599

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mystrioti, Christiana; Papassiopi, Nymphodora; Xenidis, Anthimos; Komnitsas, Konstantinos. 2018. "Counter-Current Leaching of Low-Grade Laterites with Hydrochloric Acid and Proposed Purification Options of Pregnant Solution" Minerals 8, no. 12: 599. https://doi.org/10.3390/min8120599

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