By Gerald V. Jergensen II

This quantity acknowledges the becoming position of solvent extraction and electrowinning know-how on the earth copper enterprise. This well-established, amazing hydrometallurgical fulfillment fills a tremendous function in our technical skill to extract copper in an effective and low-priced way.

This complaints files the current prestige of the SX-EW enterprise. It represents a considerable physique of ancient, clinical, engineering, and advertisement information about the expansion and alertness of the technology.

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Additional resources for Copper leaching, solvent extraction, and electrowinning technology

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B. A. , March 1994. D. Dreisinger and J. King, “Autoclaving of Copper Concentrates,” Proceedings of Copper ’95 International, Vol. III, Electrorefining and Hydrometallurgy of Copper. D. Smith, “The Economics of Autoclaving Chalcopyrite,” Proceedings of New Dimensions in Hydrometallurgy, October 2, 1998, Fluor Daniel Wright Ltd. (prepublication). R. J. , Canada, November 1996. J. K. S. Patent No. 5,730,776, March 24, 1998. L. , Canada, November 1996. L. Jones, J. Hestrin and R. Moore, “CESL Process for Nickel-Cobalt-Copper Sulphides, Testing in an Integrated Pilot Plant,” Alta ’98 Nickel Cobalt Leaching and Hydrometallurgy Forum, Perth, Australia, May 1998.

Chalcopyrite) copper concentrates have been actively investigated. Many of these have advanced to pilot scale testing and a few to demonstration or smallscale commercial production. To date, the true “hydrometallurgical smelter” has not become a reality, but three current contenders are discussed in this presentation. Despite the rather broad title, the scope of this presentation is limited to autoclave pressure oxidation (“POx”) of copper concentrates (or high-grade ores) containing a major proportion of copper as chalcopyrite, the most common economic copper mineral and the most refractory to hydrometallurgical processing.

Interprocess comparisons, an objective of this presentation, are therefore based on copper recovery from PLS and other solutions by SX-EW. This levels the field by (roughly) equalizing postleach copper recovery and product quality. Placer Dome—Total Pressure Oxidation. The POx component of Placer’s process (see Figure 1) is essentially the same as typical high severity industrial POx of refractory gold ores/concentrates. Reground concentrate is slurried in acidic recycle solution and pumped into the first compartment of an autoclave operated at 210–220°C with oxygen sparged to maintain (about) 700 kPa (100 psig) of overpressure.

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