Leaching Behaviour of Industrial Oxidic By-Products: Possibilities to Use as Neutralisation Agent in Bioleaching


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In this study chemical leaching with sulphuric acid has been performed on 10 selected oxidic by-products in order to determine their neutralising capacity. The ultimate aim with this work is to replace the lime or limestone normally used in bioleaching operations to maintain pH at 1.5, the optimum pH-level for bioleaching microorganisms, with oxidic by-products. The investigated by-products includes three ashes from combustion for energy production, five slag samples from ore and scrap based steelmaking, an EAF dust and mesa lime from a paper and pulp industry, slaked lime (Ca(OH)2) was used as reference material. The neutralising potential of the by-products were evaluated by leaching them with sulphuric acid and comparing the amount of acid needed to that of the reference. Most of the by-products examined had good neutralisation potential and some had even higher capacities than Ca(OH)2. Neutralisation kinetics were lower for some slag products due to slow dissolution of some of the silicates present, but kinetics are considered good enough since stirred tank bioleaching is a relatively slow process. Zinc recoveries from the zinc containing materials were high, which thus is an additional benefit if these materials were to be used for neutralisation in a bioleaching process for zinc recovery.



Materials Science Forum (Volumes 587-588)

Edited by:

António Torres Marques, António Fernando Silva, António Paulo Monteiro Baptista, Carlos Sá, Fernando Jorge Lino Alves, Luís Filipe Malheiros and Manuel Vieira






M.L. Cunha et al., "Leaching Behaviour of Industrial Oxidic By-Products: Possibilities to Use as Neutralisation Agent in Bioleaching", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 587-588, pp. 748-752, 2008

Online since:

June 2008




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