Determination of hexavalent and tetravalent uranium in phosphate ores through hydrochloric acid selective leaching
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- Fouad, H.K. J Radioanal Nucl Chem (2010) 285: 193. doi:10.1007/s10967-010-0540-6
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The tetravalent and hexavalent uranium content of three Egyptian phosphate type ore samples namely; Sebayia, Abu Tartur and Qatrani have been studied through selective leaching by hydrochloric acid at normal, oxidized and reduced conditions at an amount of hydrochloric acid less than the stoichiometric value i.e. before phosphoric acid production. Oxidizing condition is attained by incorporating 2% of manganese dioxide in the leaching cycle, whereas reducing condition is attained by adding 2% iron powder. The achieved results show that the amount of tetravalent uranium varies between 5 and 95%. As soon as the achieved stoichiometric value of hydrochloric acid is sufficient to produce phosphoric acid both tetravalent and hexavalent uranium dissolve by virtue of phosphoric acid complexing power for uranium. The chemical form of uranium in the ore determines the type of solvent needed to recover it.