Leaching of copper concentrates with high arsenic content in chlorine-chloride media


  • O. Herreros Dpto. de Minas, Universidad de AntofagastaDpto. de Minas, Universidad de Antofagasta
  • G. Fuentes Dpto. de Metalurgia. Universidad Católica del Norte
  • R. Quiroz Dpto. de Minas, Universidad de Antofagasta
  • J. Viñals Dpto.de Química y Metalurgia. Universidad de Barcelona




Enargite, Leaching, Chlorine, Chloride, Copper concentrates


This work reports the results of copper concentrates leaching, which have high arsenic contents (up to 2.5 %). The treatments were carried out using chlorine that forms from sodium hypochlorite and sulphuric acid. The aim of this work is to obtain a solution having high copper content 4 to 6 g/1 and 5 to 7 g/1 free acid in order to submit it directly to a solvent extraction stage. In addition, this solution should have minimum content of arsenic and chloride ions. To carry out this investigation, an acrylic reactor was constructed where the leaching tests were made at constant temperature in a thermostatic bath under atmospheric pressure. The concentrate samples were obtained from mineral processing plants from Antofagasta, Chile. Typical variables were studied, such as leaching agent concentration, leaching time, pulp density and temperature among others. Some of the residues were analyzed by XRD and EPS. On the other hand, the solutions were analyzed by Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy. The results indicate solutions having the contents stated above can be obtained.


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How to Cite

Herreros, O., Fuentes, G., Quiroz, R., & Viñals, J. (2003). Leaching of copper concentrates with high arsenic content in chlorine-chloride media. Revista De Metalurgia, 39(2), 90–98. https://doi.org/10.3989/revmetalm.2003.v39.i2.319