ISSN: 1003-6326
CN: 43-1239/TG
CODEN: TNMCEW

Vol. 27    No. 6    June 2017

Relatedness between catalytic effect of activated carbon and passivation phenomenon during chalcopyrite bioleaching by mixed thermophilic Archaea culture at 65 °C
Ya-long MA1, Hong-chang LIU1, Jin-lan XIA1,2, Zhen-yuan NIE1,2, Hong-rui ZHU1, Yi-dong ZHAO3, Chen-yan MA3, Lei ZHENG3, Cai-hao HONG3, Wen WEN4
(1. School of Minerals Processing and Bioengineering, Central South University, Changsha 410083, China;
2. Key Laboratory of Biometallurgy, Ministry of Education, Central South University, Changsha 410083, China;
3. Beijing Synchrotron Radiation Facility, Institute of High Energy Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China;
4. Shanghai Synchrotron Radiation Facility, Shanghai Institute of Applied Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 201800, China
)
Abstract: The relatedness between catalytic effect of activated carbon and passivation phenomenon during chalcopyrite bioleaching by mixed thermophilic Archaea culture (Acidianus brierleyi, Metallosphaera sedula, Acidianus manzaensis and Sulfolobus metallicus) at 65 °C was studied. Leaching experiments showed that the addition of activated carbon could significantly promote the dissolution of chalcopyrite for both bioleaching and chemical leaching. The results of synchrotron-based X-ray diffraction, iron L-edge and sulfur K-edge X-ray absorption near edge structure spectroscopy indicated that activated carbon could change the transition path of electrons through galvanic interactions to form more readily dissolved secondary mineral chalcocite at a low redox potential (<400 mV) and then enhanced the copper dissolution. Jarosite accumulated immediately in the initial stage of bioleaching with activated carbon but copper dissolution was not hindered. However, much jarosite precipitated on the surface of chalcopyrite in the late stage of bioleaching, which might account for the decrease of copper dissolution rate. More elemental sulfur (S0) was also detected with additional activated carbon but the mixed thermophilic Archaea culture had a great sulfur oxidation activity, thus S0 was eliminated and seemed to have no significant influence on the dissolution of chalcopyrite.
Key words: chalcopyrite; bioleaching; activated carbon; passivation phenomenon; mixed thermophilic Archaea culture
Superintended by The China Association for Science and Technology (CAST)
Sponsored by The Nonferrous Metals Society of China (NFSOC)
Managed by Central South University (CSU)