Recovery of Ni/Co/Cu from amorphous slags
The proposed study is a part of a project that will aid in implementing an environmentally clean technology for the recovery of Ni, Co and Cu from slags (waste and semi-waste materials) of nickel production in Ontario. The conventional technology for metal recovery can treat only slags with a high content of valuable metals (~3%), and it results in technological and environmental complications, such as recycling of impurities as well as uncontrollable release of fugitive sulphur dioxide into the atmosphere. Pressure oxidative acid leaching, the alternative technology proposed, is superior in terms of its environmental impact, and, perhaps, cost. Feed preparation via granulation can make the process more attractive for implementation. However, it has been found impossible to recover the valuable metals from amorphous slags obtained by granulation. The work to be undertaken will help determine the mechanism responsible for the issue in order to come up with a solution.