MATERIALI IN TEHNOLOGIJE, cilt.50, ss.395-401, 2016 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi)
The present work focuses on the extraction of Cu, suitable for production, directly from a leach solution of a chalcopyrite concentrate as an alternative to the conventional smelting and refining method. Firstly, the main aspects of the kinetics of chalcopyrite leaching in a sulphuric-acid solution and transformation reactions of chalcopyrite at high temperatures were briefly reviewed. Secondly, atmospheric-acid leaching experiments were performed as a function of the acid content and temperature under agitation. Direct leaching experiments resulted in very low and scattered Cu recoveries, hence revealing a sulphide passivation layer on the chalcopyrite. In order to get rid of this layer, the sulphides in the chalcopyrite were transformed into sulphates with heat treatment at 500 degrees C prior to the leaching process, in which a high dissolution of species was obtained. Finally, the leaching of the pre-heated concentrate resulted in a 99.82 % Cu extraction. Consequently, optimized process parameters were proposed by comparing the Cu extraction and the increased purity of the pregnant solution without Fe impurities.