Kinetics of Copper Segregation by the Torco Process

Brittan, M. I.
Organization: The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 12
Publication Date: Unavailable
SYNOPSIS The key reactions of the copper segregation process have been studied with a view to establishing the kinetics of the system. The investigation was carried out using two refractory copper ores from the Zambian Copperbelt in a small-scale, fluidized bed, chloridization reactor. The rate of chloridization of the copper in the ores is compared with the rate of volatilization of the cuprous chloride produced and with the rate of reduction of the cuprous chloride to form segregated metallic copper. In conjunction with available data on the rate of production of hydrogen chloride in a segregation system and with due regard to the conditions applicable in a TORCO reactor, it is concluded that the chloridization reaction is the major rate limiting step of the process. Factors influencing the rate of this extraction step and aspects of its mechanism are examined. The findings have confirmed the validity of the existing theory of segregation and provide insight as to the viability of the system of reactions involved in the copper segregation phenomenon. Experimental results which relate to observations made in the course of TORCO plant operation and segregation studies are discussed.
Full Article Download:
(1372 kb)