Distribution of gold and silver between nickel-copper matte and silica-saturated iron silicate slag

Choi, N. ; Cho, W. D.
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 7
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1999
Distribution coefficients of gold and silver between matte and slag during the pyrometallurgical treatment of nickel-copper sulfide concentrates were evaluated as a function of matte and slag compositions in the temperature range of 1,250oC to 1,300oC. It was observed that the composition of the matte phase, including matte grade and copper content in the matte, significantly affected the distribution behavior of gold and silver in the matte-slag system. Both gold and silver preferentially concentrated in the matte phase as the matte grade increased With increasing temperature and copper content in the matte, the distribution coefficients of silver increased, while the gold distribution coefficients decreased. It was also, found that slag additives such as CaO, MgO, and A12O3 caused a significant decrease in the solubility of both gold and silver in silica-saturated iron silicate slag. An activity coefficient of gold in matte was derived from the experimenta1 results.
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