Cu adsorption behaviours onto chelating resins from glycine-cyanide solutions: Isotherms, kinetics and regeneration studies
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© 2019 Elsevier B.V.
A method is presented to remove and recover copper from copper-gold glycinate solutions using an iminodiacetic functionalized resin with subsequent regeneration. The adsorption/desorption approach was evaluated for a glycine leaching process which was shown to be effective for the dissolution of gold and copper from different gold-copper ores and concentrates. In this process, glycine is the lixiviant in the presence of very low cyanide concentration as a synergistic reagent. The copper species in glycine-cyanide process are mainly present as cupric glycinate and a low concentration of cuprous dicyanide and no free cyanide. While cupric glycinate does not load well onto activated carbon, cuprous dicyanide is problematic due to its high carbon affinity and co-loading with gold onto activated carbon, thereby requiring the removal of most of the copper prior to the gold recovery. In this study, the use of ion-exchange resins as one of the possible downstream recovery processes for gold and copper from glycine-cyanide solutions was tested. The isotherms and kinetics of gold and copper (cupric copper (Cu2+)) adsorb onto the chelating resin (Puromet MTS9300) from their alkaline glycinate and cyanide complexes were studied. Results show that the [CNT−]: [CuT] molar ratio has significant effects on the adsorption of CuT, due to the change in Cu2+/Cu+ ratio in the solutions, where [CN−T] is the total cyanide in the system (free cyanide being zero). The results show that the chelating resin is selectively adsorbed cupric (Cu2+) over cuprous (Cu+) ions. The adsorption results were fitted to both the Freundlich and Langmuir isotherm models, while the Langmuir model shows a better correlation. The adsorption kinetic data of Cu2+ is well fitted to the pseudo-second-order model. Alkaline glycine solutions in the presence of NaCl was selected as the main eluent for the resin elution study. The multi-cycle adsorption/desorption tests showed that the resin adsorption and regeneration efficiencies are not significantly changed after five cycles of adsorption/desorption. Microscopic visual analysis by using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) showed that there is no significant change in shape and size of the resins, although more cracks were observed after the 5 cycles of adsorption/desorption.
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