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Metals 2019, 9(2), 189;

Leaching Chalcopyrite Concentrate with Oxygen and Sulfuric Acid Using a Low-Pressure Reactor

Metallurgical Processes, Servicios Especializados Peñoles S.A de C.V., Torreón 27300, México
Division of Graduate Studies and Research, Instituto Tecnológico de Saltillo, Saltillo 25280, México
Department of Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering, Universidad de Sonora, Hermosillo 83000, México
Faculty of Metallurgy, Universidad Autónoma de Coahuila, Monclova 25710, México
Metallurgical Processes, Servicios Administrativos Peñoles S.A. de C.V., Torreón 27300, México
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 January 2019 / Revised: 29 January 2019 / Accepted: 1 February 2019 / Published: 6 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Leaching Kinetics of Valuable Metals)
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This article presents a copper leaching process from chalcopyrite concentrates using a low-pressure reactor. The experiments were carried out in a 30 L batch reactor at an oxygen pressure of 1 kg/cm2 and solid concentration of 100 g/L. The temperature, particle size and initial acid concentration were varied based on a Taguchi L9 experimental design. The initial and final samples of the study were characterized by chemical analysis, X-ray diffraction and particle size distribution. The mass balance showed that 98% of copper was extracted from the chalcopyrite concentrate in 3 h under the following experimental conditions: 130 g/L of initial sulfuric acid concentration, temperature of 100 °C, oxygen pressure of 1 kg/cm2, solid concentration of 100 g/L and particle size of −105 + 75 μm. The ANOVA demonstrated that temperature had the greatest influence on copper extraction. The activation energy was 61.93 kJ/mol. The best fit to a linear correlation was the chemical reaction equation that controls the kinetics for the leaching copper from chalcopyrite. The images obtained by SEM showed evidence of shrinking in the core model with the formation of a porous elemental sulfur product layer. View Full-Text
Keywords: Hydrometallurgical processes; Chalcopyrite; kinetics; low-pressure leaching Hydrometallurgical processes; Chalcopyrite; kinetics; low-pressure leaching

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Cháidez, J.; Parga, J.; Valenzuela, J.; Carrillo, R.; Almaguer, I. Leaching Chalcopyrite Concentrate with Oxygen and Sulfuric Acid Using a Low-Pressure Reactor. Metals 2019, 9, 189.

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