Next Article in Journal
Fracture Energy and Fracture Morphology after Three-Point Bending Test of Welded Joints Made of Cast Steel Designed for Use in Power Sector, with and without the Addition of Rare Earth Metals
Previous Article in Journal
Tribological Behavior of AA1050H24-Graphene Nanocomposite Obtained by Friction Stir Processing
Open AccessArticle

Alternative Silver Production by Environmental Sound Processing of a Sulfo Salt Silver Mineral Found in Bolivia

1
Institute of Process Metallurgy and Metal Recycling, RWTH-Aachen University, Intzestr. 3, 52056 Aachen, Germany
2
Institute of Applied Mineralogy and Economic Geology, RWTH-Aachen University, Wüllnerstr. 2, D-52062 Aachen, Germany
3
Unit of Mineral Processing, RWTH Aachen University, Lochnerstr. 4-20, D-52064 Aachen, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Metals 2018, 8(2), 114; https://doi.org/10.3390/met8020114
Received: 27 October 2017 / Revised: 29 January 2018 / Accepted: 2 February 2018 / Published: 7 February 2018
Very often, the production of silver causes devastating environmental issues, because of the use of toxic reagents like cyanide and mercury. Due to severe environmental damage caused by humans in the last decades, the social awareness regarding the sustainable production processes is on the rise. Terms like “sustainable” and “green” in product descriptions are becoming more and more popular and producers are forced to satisfy the rising environmental awareness of their customers. Within this work, an alternative environmental sound silver recovery process was developed for a vein type silver ore from Mina Porka, Bolivia. A foregoing characterization of the input material reveals its mineral composition. In the following mineral processing, around 92.9% silver was concentrated by separating 59.5 wt. % of non-silver minerals. Nitric acid leaching of the generated concentrate enabled a silver recovery of up to 98%. The dissolved silver was then separated via copper cementation to generate a metallic silver product of >99% purity. Summarizing all process steps, a silver yield of 87% was achieved in lab scale. A final upscaling trial was conducted to prove the process’ robustness. Within this trial, almost 4 kg of metallic silver with a purity of higher than 99.5 wt. % was produced. View Full-Text
Keywords: green silver; sustainable production; QEMSCAN; flotation; cyanide free green silver; sustainable production; QEMSCAN; flotation; cyanide free
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

MDPI and ACS Style

Birich, A.; Friedrich, B.; Gronen, L.; Katzmarzyk, J.; Silin, I.; Wotruba, H. Alternative Silver Production by Environmental Sound Processing of a Sulfo Salt Silver Mineral Found in Bolivia. Metals 2018, 8, 114.

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.

Article Access Map

1
Back to TopTop