Introduction to Leaching is the first in a series of four hydrometallurgy courses by the author, written for university students as well as practicing engineers and metallurgists.
The Hydrometallurgy series covers the elementary theoretical basis of solution chemistry, the engineering aspects, and the technical applications for a large variety of raw materials, e.g. metals, oxides, sulfides, phosphates, silicates, and others. It also covers the purification-concentration steps such as adsorption on activated charcoal, ion exchange, and solvent extraction. Finally, the general aspects of precipitation from aqueous solutions are covered with numerous examples. The series is characterized by clear and simplified flowsheets, numerous chemical equations written mainly in ionic form, many illustrations for equipment and plants, and finally a lucid style presenting the facts point by point as concisely as possible.
Hydrometallurgy 1 - Introduction to Leaching covers solution chemistry, leaching mechanisms and processes, leaching methods and equipment, engineering aspects and microorganisms. Solution chemistry introduces the structure of minerals and water, elementary concepts of acids and bases, oxidation and reduction, complex formation and precipitation. These concepts are included because many metallurgy students do not have this chemistry background. The rest of the course is devoted to the general aspects of leaching of ores and concentrates, the reagents used, methods and equipment, the engineering aspects, and the role of microorganisms.
The course comprises 23 learning sessions, each of 30 - 60 minutes duration, plus supporting figures, tables, images and references, and interactive reviews that confirm achievement of the learning objectives. The total duration of the course is estimated at 18 hours.