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Wise Process Routes for Varying Feedstock in Base Metal Extraction: Modelling of a Peirce-Smith Converter and Investigation of Buildup Formation in an Electric Smelting Furnace
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering, Minerals and Metallurgical Engineering.
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Kloka processvägar för varierande råmaterial vid utvinning av basmetaller (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

Copper, like silver and gold, is one of the metals that are known to have been worked by some of the oldest civilisations on record. It is used forits unique properties such as corrosion resistance, good workability, high thermal conductivity and attractive appearance. New mines are opened to maintain a supply of primary feedstock for copper smelters. These new deposits are in many instances found to have a more complex mineralogy with several minor elements. Besides treating primary material, copper smelters are also showing an increasing interest in treating secondary materials, such as copper containing scrap from waste electrical and electronic equipment, which also have a complex composition. This increased complexity of the raw material can potentially lead to smelter plants having to deal with a feedstock containing several minor elements, including antimony, arsenic, bismuth, gold, silver, etc., at levels that can influence the ability to, in a cost effective way, maintain the final grade of the copper cathode. Process simulations can be an important tool for understanding the impact of process parameters on product quality and for the purpose of process optimisation. In the present work a dynamic, non-equilibrium model based on thermodynamics over the Peirce-Smith converter has been developed. The model was found to predict the composition of the main condensed phases well. Thermodynamic calculations in combination with characterisation have also been used to understand the buildup in an electric smelting furnace. Results from the characterisation and the modelling showed that the buildup consists mainly of different phases such as spinel, matte, olivine and metalloids and has a complex and varying mineralogy, which indicates that the buildup is not formed under equilibrium conditions. During the modelling the impact of parameters such as Fe/SiO2ratio, partial pressure of oxygen and the content of the oxides ZnO, Al 4O3 and Cr2O3 in the slag were investigated with respect to the liquidus temperature of the slag. The modelling showed that the chromium content in the slag has the greatest impact on the liquidus temperature and on the formation of solid particles. The thermodynamic modelling supports the result from the characterisation.The combination of characterisation, thermodynami-based modelling and process knowledge gives further understanding of element distribution. This enhances the potential to adjust for variations in raw material feed and flexible process routes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Doctoral thesis / Luleå University of Technology 1 jan 1997 → …, ISSN 1402-1544
Keyword [en]
Chemical engineering - Metallurgical process and manufacturing engineering
Keyword [sv]
Kemiteknik - Metallurgisk process- och produktionsteknik
Research subject
Process Metallurgy
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-17691Local ID: 4b186303-bf34-43a2-b1b9-3a5d1dd78e62ISBN: 978-91-7583-401-6 (print)ISBN: 978-91-7583-402-3 (electronic)OAI: diva2:990696
Godkänd; 2015; 20150826 (lenann); Nedanstående person kommer att disputera för avläggande av teknologie doktorsexamen. Namn: Andreas Lennartsson Ämne: Processmetallurgi/Process Metallurgy Avhandling: Wise Process Routes for Varying Feedstock in Base Metal Extraction Opponent: Professor Pekka Taskinen, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Aalto University, Helsingfors, Finland. Ordförande: Biträdande professor Caisa Samuelsson, Avd för mineralteknik och metallurgi, Institutionen för samhällsbyggnad och naturresurser, Luleå tekniska universitet, Luleå. Tid: Fredag 30 oktober, 2015 kl 10.00 Plats: F531, Luleå tekniska universitetAvailable from: 2016-09-29 Created: 2016-09-29Bibliographically approved

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