Models for viscosity and density of copper electrorefining electrolytes
More details
Hide details
Aalto University
Publication date: 2017-05-07
Corresponding author
Taina Kalliomäki   

Aalto University, Vuorimiehentie 2, 02150 Espoo, Finland
Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 2017;53(2):1023-1037
Viscosity and density of copper electrorefining electrolytes affect energy consumption and purity of cathode copper. Decreasing the viscosity and density increases the rate of falling of the anode slimes to the bottom of an electrorefining cell and increases the diffusivity and mobility of ions. Increasing the falling rate of the anode slimes decreases a risk of anode slime impurities ending up on the cathode and being entrapped into the copper deposit. This work introduces two new models for both viscosity and density of copper electrorefining electrolytes with high accuracy and one reconstructed improved model for some electrorefining data of viscosity published previously. The experimental work to build up these new models was carried out as a function of temperature (50, 60, 70 °C), copper (40, 50, 60 g/dm3), nickel (0, 10, 20 g/dm3) and sulfuric acid (130, 145, 160 g/dm3) concentrations for all models, and additionally arsenic concentration (0, 15, 30, 32, 64 g/dm3) was included in the viscosity models. Increasing concentrations of Cu, Ni, As and H2SO4 were found to increase the viscosity and density, whereas increasing temperature decreased both viscosity and density. The viscosity models were validated with industrial electrolyte samples from the Boliden Harjavalta Pori tankhouse. The experimental and modeling work carried out in this study resulted in improved viscosity models, having the strongest agreement with the industrial electrorefining electrolytes.
CIFUENTES, L., ARRIAGADA, P., 2008, Copper electrowinning in a moving-bed cell based on reactive electrodialysis, Rev. Metal., 44 (2), 151-161.
CASAS, J.M., ETCHART, J.P., CIFUENTES, L., 2003, Aqueous speciation of arsenic in sulfuric acid and cupric sulfate solutions, AIChE J., 2199-2210.
DAVENPORT, W.G., KING, M., SCHLESINGER, M., BISWAS, A.K., ROBINSON, T., 2002, Electrolytic Refining, in: Extractive Metallurgy of Copper, 4th Edition, ISBN: 0-08-044029-0, Elsevier Science Ltd., 265-288.
DEVOCHKIN, A.I., KUZMINA, I.S., SALIMZHANOVA, E.V., PETUKHOVA, L.I., 2015, The study of sulfate copper electrolyte physicochemical properties depending on its components and temperature, Tsvetnye Metally, 6, 67-71.
JARJOURA, G., MUINONEN, M., KIPOUROS, G.J., 2003, Physicochemical properties of nickel copper sulfate solutions, Can. Metall. Q., 42(3), 281-288.
KALLIOMÄKI, T., AROMAA, J., LUNDSTRÖM, M., 2016, Conductivity Model for Copper Electrorefining Electrolyte, Proceedings of Copper 2016, November 13-16, Kobe, Japan.
MOATS, M.S., HISKEY, J.B., COLLINS, D.W., 2000, The effect of copper, acid, and temperature on the diffusion coefficient of cupric ions in simulated electrorefining electrolytes, Hydrometallurgy, 56, 255-268.
MOATS, M.S., WANG, S., FILZWIESER A., SIEGMUND A., DAVENPORT W., 2016, Survey of copper electrorefining operations, Proceedings of Copper 2016, Japan, 1914-1923.
PENG, Y.L., ZHENG, Y.J., CHEN, W.M., 2012, The oxidation of arsenic from As(III) to As(V) during copper electrorefining, Hydrometallurgy, 129-130, 129-130.
PRICE, D.C., DAVENPORT, W.G., 1980, Densities, electrical conductivities and viscosities of CuSO4/H2SO4 solutions in the range of modern electrorefining and electrowinning electrolytes, Met. Trans. B, 11B, 159-163.
PRICE, D.C., DAVENPORT, W.G., 1981, Physico-chemical properties of copper electrorefining and electrowinning electrolytes, Met. Trans. B, 12B, 639-643.
SHI, Y., YE, Z., 2013, An overview of research on Au & Ag recovery in copper smelter, in: 4th International Symposium on High Temperature Metallurgical Processing, March 3-7, San Antonio, Texas, USA.
SUBBAIAH, T., DAS, S.C., 1989, Physico-chemical properties of copper electrolytes, Met. Trans. B, 20B, 375-380.
Journals System - logo
Scroll to top