Bioleaching of metals from Polish black shale in neutral medium
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University of Opole
Jadwiga Farbiszewska-Kiczma   

University of Opole, Faculty of Natural and Technical Sciences, Process Engineering Department, ul. Dmowskiego 7-9, 45-365 Opole
Publication date: 2004-01-01
Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 2004;38(1):272–280
The black shale present in Polish ores (Lubin region) differs from others in mineralogical and chemical properties and in susceptibility to enrichment. The ores are characterized by high content of copper and others metals like silver. Some metals in the shale ore are present as bituminous organo- metallic compounds such as porphyrinus. The presence of these compounds, reduces metals recovery by classical acid bioleaching methods. This study has been undertaken in order to determine possibilities of metals bioleaching from the sandwich compounds occurred in black shale. The bioleaching process was carried out in neutral medium using Bacillus cereus and Bacillus amyloliquefaciens strains. The progress of this process was followed by analysis of copper, zinc and nickel bioleaching kinetics. The bioleaching experiments with copper suggest different organic forms of this metal in the shale ore. Some of them are highly susceptible to bioleaching by heterotrophic bacteria. Organic compounds of the nickel appeared to be more resistant to bioleaching than copper compounds. Bioleaching of zinc was negligible. Also, the bioleaching process was carried out on a batch scale using “Biomel” reactor.