Electrochemical leaching of gold-bearing arsenopyrite in alkaline cyanide solutions.
AdvisorGoodman, Seymour E.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractRest potential measurements, cyclic voltammetry, linear sweep voltammetry and constant potential coulometry were used to determine the electrochemical response of arsenopyrite in the absence and in the presence of cyanide and to determine its dissolution chemistry. Surface oxidation of arsenopyrite is proposed to proceed by a two-step reaction sequence. FeOOH, H₂AsO₃⁻, and Sᵒ, are produced in the initial step. Oxidation of Sᵒ to SO₄²⁻, and H₂AsO₃⁻ to HAsO₄²⁻ account for the second step. Coulometric results confirmed that 14 electrons are involved in the overall reaction. The implications of these results on the cyanidation of arsenical gold-bearing concentrates were also investigated. The response of four different concentrates to various cyanidation techniques was examined. Alkaline pressure oxidation in 1 M NaOH, at 200°C and under 500 psi of oxygen overpressure followed by conventional cyanidation resulted in 81% gold extraction from a concentrate that yielded only 2% gold extraction after direct cyanidation.
Degree ProgramBusiness Administration