Selective Extraction of Copper from Copper Concentrates Containing High-Arsenic under High Pressure Oxidative Leaching

Additonal authors: Altansukh, Batnasan. Book title: Proceedings of the 58th Conference of Metallurgists Hosting Copper 2019. Chapter: . Chapter title:

Proceedings, Vol. Proceedings of the 58th Conference of Metallurgists Hosting Copper 2019, 2019

Shibayama, Atsushi

In this study, the dissolution behavior of copper and arsenic from five different copper concentrates containing 21-34.7 %wt. of Cu, 1.3-7.3 %wt. of As and 15.6-27.5 %wt. of Fe were investigated under high pressure oxidative leaching conditions. Leaching experiments were conducted using different leaching reagents such as ferric sulfate, sodium chloride, deionized water, sulfuric acid and ferric sulfate-sodium chloride mixture in order to compare the effectiveness of each on the dissolution of copper and arsenic from copper concentrates. The effects of ferric sulfate (0.1-1 mol/L), sodium chloride (0.1-0.5 mol/L) and leaching temperature (100-180C) were investigated under 1 MPa autoclave pressure , particle size >45 m, pulp density of 100 g/L, stirring speed of 750 rpm and leaching time of 60 min. Results showed that the most effective leaching reagents for the dissolution of copper are 0.34 M NaCl and a mixture of 0.1 M Fe2(SO4)3 - 0.34 M NaCl, in which As extraction did not exceed 7%. The copper concentration in the pregnant leach solution obtained after leaching using 0.1 M Fe2(SO4)3 - 0.34 M NaCl was 13-30 g/L, while the concentration of As and Fe were in a range between 0.3-1 g/L and 0.2-10 g/L at 160C. INTRODUCTION Copper sulfide minerals, such as chalcopyrite (CuFeS2), chalcocite (Cu2S) and covellite (CuS) are used for the production of copper in mining and metallurgical industries worldwide. The conventional pyrometallurgical processing followed by electrorefining is a common process for the production of high purity copper (Moskalyk, & Alfantazi, 2003; Padilla, Aracena, & Ruiz, 2012). However, the degradation of copper content and an increase in the amount of metal impurities, especially arsenic (As), antimony (Sb) and bismuth (Bi) in copper concentrates cause serious problems to the production of copper and environmental pollution (Basha, Selvi, Ramasamy, & Chellammal, 2008; Long, Peng, & Bradshaw, 2012). Hydrometallurgical processes are used to recover metals from refractory ores, concentrates and tailings by leaching (Long, Peng, & Bradshaw, 2012; Masloboev, Seleznev, Svetlov, & Makarov, 2018). During the last decades, hydrometallurgical processing for the recovery of copper from enargite-bearing copper ores and concentrates has been extensively investigated due to its relatively more environmentally benign and less capital costs than the conventional pyrometallurgical processes (Long, Peng, & Bradshaw, 2012; Masloboev, Seleznev, Svetlov, & Makarov, 2018; Choubey, Lee, Kim, & Kim 2018). However, several issues facing the hydrometallurgical processing are incomplete extraction of copper associated with the coprecipitation of iron compounds, difficult stabilization of toxic impurities and production of a contaminated copper product (Dreisinger, 2003; Safarzadeh, Moats, & Miller, 2014). Hence, a number of studies have been conducted on the selective dissolution of copper from copper ores and concentrates or selective removal of arsenic leaving a clean copper residue using various leaching reagents or lixiviants (Safarzadeh, Moats, & Miller, 2014; Mihajlovic, Strbac, Zivkovic, Kovacevic, & Stehernic, 2007; Tongamp, Takasaki, & Shibayama, 2009). More extensive studies on the selective extraction of copper from enargite- bearing copper ores and concentrates are much needed to improve copper recovery.
Keywords: Copper 2019, COM2019