Towards Improving Stainless Steel Cathode Performance during Copper Electrodeposition

Stainless steel permanent cathodes are widely used in the electrodeposition of copper during its production. Copper is mechanically-stripped from the permanent cathode on a regular basis, after which the cathode is typically visually inspected, water-washed and returned to the production cell. However, offline refurbishment is required to ensure a high quality product (chemical purity, surface roughness and morphology), and efficient mechanical stripping and tank house operation. The objective of the research proposed is to develop physical description of used cathode surface as it evolves during offline refurbishment based on advanced surface characterization. The knowledge generated will identify promising refurbishment strategies to provide improved performance and thus, increased lifetime. Benefits specific to EPCM Services include a made in Canada knowledge-based approach to providing top quality refurbished cathodes, which will only maintain, but grow, their market share of the global mining industry.

Darren Feenstra
Faculty Supervisor: 
Joey Kish
Partner University: