As, Sb, and Fe removal from industrial copper electrolyte by solvent displacement crystallization technique
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionCanadian metallurgical quarterly. 2018, . 10.1080/00084433.2018.1549346
The presence of impurities in the copper electrolyte increases the energy consumption of an electrorefining process and contaminates the deposited copper on cathode. The concentration of impurities increases over time making it necessary to remove them from the solution. This research introduces a fast, effective, and simple method to refine the industrial electrolyte from arsenic, iron and antimony by solvent displacement crystallisation technique. In this method, when alcohol is added to the electrolyte, the impurities precipitate from the solution as amorphous arsenato antimonite phase. Results show that Fe, Sb, and As are removed from the copper electrolyte by 75.2, 96.9 and 99.8%, respectively. Electro winning experiments show that the electric energy consumption for electrodeposition of copper is 15.5% lower when the electrolyte is free of impurities.