UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Application of an ion exchange loading correlation for nickel recovery from ferrous containing solution Abbasi Jahromi, Parisa Sadat


Nickeliferous laterite ore is one of the resources for nickel recovery that can be processed by using commercially-available processes such as High Pressure Acid Leach. Since this is a costly hydrometallurgical process, maximum nickel recovery is required to justify the investment. Recently, the use of ion exchange resins and resin-in-pulp processes have been considered and proposed as methods of primary or secondary metal recovery from nickel laterite leach slurries and leach tailings. The solution produced in the high pressure acid leach treatment of laterite ores contains several impurities. As a result, the presence of high levels of impurities such as the ferrous ion is expected to be present in an actual resin-in-pulp feed slurry. Many of these impurities (including ferrous) initially load onto the resin and are then displaced by the target metal ion (nickel). Thus, it is expected to see a different nickel loading manner in the presence of ferrous ions compared to the loading of nickel in the absence of any impurities (i.e. nickel load onto resin only by displacing hydrogen ions). This emphasizes the significance of testing the desired ion exchange resin under conditions reflective of the expected industrial operating conditions. This thesis reports on the investigation of the loading rate of nickel onto an iminodiacetic acid ion exchange resin (TP207XL) under the finite solution volume condition in the presence of ferrous in a batch loading system. Initially, the batch loading rate of the ferrous ion onto resin under the infinite solution volume condition was examined. A hybrid correlation model was applied for both ferrous loading and nickel-ferrous displacement loading based on the kinetics experimental datasets. The correlation was found to adequately fit the ferrous loading datasets. According to the obtained fit parameters, it was proven that the loading rate of the ferrous ions onto the resin is slower than that of copper, nickel and cobalt ions. Furthermore, in the case of ferrous-nickel displacement tests, the experimental fit parameters of the hybrid correlation were used to successfully predict the results of the batch loading experiments by applying the finite difference model.

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