Atmospheric pressure leaching of nickel from a low-grade nickel-bearing ore
More details
Hide details
Department of Mining Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Birjand.
Department of Mining Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Birjand
Sepideh Javanshir   

Department of Mining Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Birjand., Mining engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, University of Birjand, Birjand, Iran, 9717434765 Birjand, Iran
Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 2018;54(3):890–900
This study focused on the extraction of nickel from a low-grade lateritic ore. The characterization of representative samples was done by X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray fluorescence (XRF), and microscopic mineralogical studies. Nickel was uniformly distributed in iron (hydr)oxide minerals. The pre-concentration of nickel was attempted by magnetic separation, but was unsuccessful. The effect of the type of lixiviant, acid concentration, S/L ratio, time, and temperature were investigated in the atmospheric leaching process. Based on the experimental data, optimum conditions for the maximum recovery of nickel were determined under the following conditions: 5 M H2SO4, 25% (w/v), 90 ºC, and two hours. Pre-calcination, for increasing nickel extraction by converting goethite to hematite, was carried out on raw ores at different times (30-180 minutes) and temperatures (180-540 ºC). Recovery was found increasing from 69 to 95% under the same conditions. Kinetic studies were conducted by fitting the data with Shrinking Core (SC) models. The study determined, from the estimate of activation energy, that the rate of reaction controlled by chemical reaction.
BASTURKCU, H., ACARKAN, N., 2017, Selective nickel-iron separation from atmospheric leach liquor of a lateritic ore using the para-geothite method, Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 53(1), 212-226.
BÜYÜKAKINCI, E., TOPKAYA, Y.A., 2009, Extraction of nickel from lateritic ores at atmospheric pressure with agitation leaching, Hydrometallurgy 97, 33-38.
CHANG, Y., ZHAI, X., FU,Y., MA, L., LI, B., ZHANG, T., 2008, Phase transformation in reductive roasting of laterite ore with microwave heating, Trans. Nonferrous Met. Soc. China, 18 (4), 969-973.
CHANG, Y., ZHAOA, K., PEŠIĆB, B., 2016, Selective acid leaching of nickel from the pre-reduced limonitic laterite under moderate HPAL conditions - Part I: Dissolution, J. Min. Metall. Sect. B-Metall. 52 (2), 127-134.
DALVI, A.D., BACON, W.G., OSBORNE, R.C., 2004, The past and the future of nickel laterites, PDAC 2004 International Convention, Trade Show & Investors Exchange, 1-27.
FAN, C., ZHAI, X., FU, Y., CHANG, Y., LI, B., ZHANG, T., 2010, Extraction of nickel and cobalt from reduced limonitic laterite using a selective chlorination–water leaching process, Hydrometallurgy, 105, 191-194.
GUO, X., LI, D., PARK, K., TIAN, Q., WU, Z., 2009, Leaching behavior of metals from a limonitic nickel laterite using a sulfation–roasting–leaching process, Hydrometallurgy, 99, 144-150.
HABASHI, F., 1969, Principles of Extractive Metallurgy, Volume 1. General Principles, Gordon & Breach, New York – London – Paris 1969 (reprinted 1980).
HARRIS, B., WHITE, C., DRY, M., EVANS, P., 2009, Treatment of nickel laterites by chloride and hybrid chloride-sulfate process. 39th Annual Hydrometallurgy Meeting, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, 523-536.
KIM, J., DODBIBA, G., TANNO, H., OKAYA, K., MATSUO, S., 2010, Toyohisa Fujita Calcination of low-grade laterite for concentration of Ni by magnetic separation, Miner. Eng., 23, 282-288.
LI, J., BUNNEY, K., WATLING, H.R., ROBINSON, D.J., 2013, Thermal pre-treatment of refractory limonite ores to enhance the extraction of nickel and cobalt under heap leaching conditions, Miner. Eng. 41, 71-78.
LIU, H., GILLASPIE, J., LEWIS, C., NEUDORF, D., BARNETT, S., 2004, Atmospheric leaching of laterites with iron precipitation as goethite, International Laterite Nickel Symposium. TMS, Warrendale, 347-368.
LIU, H., KREBS, D., 2006, Process for Enhanced Acid Leaching of Laterite Ores, World Patent WO 2006/084335. 17 August 2006.
MACCARTHY, J., ADDAI-MENSAH, J., NOSRATI, A., 2014, Acid leaching behaviour of siliceous goethitic Ni laterite ore: effect of solid loading and temperature, Miner. Eng., 69, 154-164.
MACCARTHY, J., NOSRATI, A., SKINNER, W., ADDAI-MENSAH, J., 2016, Atmospheric acid leaching mechanisms and kinetics and rheological studies of a low grade saprolitic nickel laterite ore, Hydrometallurgy, 160, 26-37.
MCCARTHY, F., BROCK, G., 2015, Direct Nickel Process – Breakthrough Technology, Proceedings of Nickel Ores and Concentrates’15, Cornwall, UK, May 13-14, 10p.
MCDONALD, R.G., WHITTINGTON, B.I., 2008a, Atmospheric acid leaching of nickel laterites review. Part I. Sulfuric acid technologies. Hydrometallurgy 91, 35-55.
MCDONALD, R.G., WHITTINGTON, B.I., 2008b, Atmospheric acid leaching of nickel laterites review. Part II. Chloride and bio-technologies, Hydrometallurgy 91, 56-69.
PAWLOWSKA, A., SADOWSKI, Z., 2017, Influence of chemical and biogenic leaching on surface area and particle size of laterite ore, Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 53(2), 869-877.
TEIR, S., REVITZER, H., ELONEVA, S., FOGELHOLM, C.J., ZEVENHOVEN, R., 2007, Dissolution of natural serpentinite in mineral and organic acids. Int. J. Miner. Process., 83, 36-46.
WANG, X.D., MCDONALD, R.G., HART, R.D., LI, J., VAN RIESSEN, A., 2014, Acid resistance of goethite in nickel laterite ore from Western Australia. Part II. Effect of liberating cementations on acid leaching performance, Hydrometallurgy, 141, 49-58.
WANTA, K.C., PERDANA, I., PERTRUS, H.T.B.M., 2016, Evaluation of shrinking core model in leaching process of Pomalaa nickel laterite using citric acid as leachant at atmospheric conditions, IOP Conf. Ser.: Mater. Sci. Eng. 162 012018.
ZHANG, Y.L., WANG, C.Y., YANG, Y.Q., YIN, F., MA, B.Z., 2015, Pressure nitric acid leaching of alkali-pretreated low-grade limonitic laterite. Rare Metals, 34, 64-70.