Advertisement

Fundamental Electrochemical Behavior of Antimony in Alkaline Solution

  • 59 Accesses

Abstract

Even though electroplating has been applied to extract antimony from the relevant mines, such as stibnite (Sb2S3) and valentinite (Sb2O3), there are still some unclear points which need to be clarified: in alkaline sulfide solution, S2− can help increase the solubility of Sb(III) ions. In the present study, cyclic voltammetry (CV) and chronoamperometry (CA) tests were employed to investigate the electrochemical behavior of antimony ions in KOH solution (20 wt%), and the results revealed that Sb(III) ions have much higher electrochemical activity than Sb(V) ions. However, Sb(V) ions are not completely inactive at the potential before H2 evolution reaction, as previous studies reported, and part of Sb(V) ions can be electroplated in the KOH solution. The contradictions between the present and previous studies are due to the impurity caused by Sb(III) ions, which are speculated to play a role in Sb(V) ion reduction. Ions such as As3+, Si4+, CO32−, Al3+, and Sn2+ show no interference on the electroplating of antimony. Other electrochemical and chemical behaviors are clarified in this study as well: (1) the Sb(III)/Sb(0) couple is more electrochemically reversible at the interface of antimony metal/KOH solution than that at the interface of a glass carbon/KOH solution; (2) in a sulfide alkaline solution system, S2− ions can coordinate with Sb(III) ions and lower the reduction potential of Sb(III) ions to antimony metal, thus leading to a lower current efficiency of antimony electroplating. The reducing reagents, including KI, K2SO3, and KBH4, can reduce Sb(V) ions to Sb(III) ions in an acid solution, but these chemical reduction reactions cannot happen in the KOH solution. These fundamental studies can provide knowledge on antimony refining from the relevant secondary resources.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Access options

Buy single article

Instant unlimited access to the full article PDF.

US$ 39.95

Price includes VAT for USA

Subscribe to journal

Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.

US$ 199

This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7

References

  1. 1.

    Dupont D, Arnout S, Jones PT et al (2016) Antimony recovery from end-of-life products and industrial process residues: a critical review. J Sustain Met 2:79–103

  2. 2.

    Anderson CG (2012) The metallurgy of antimony. Chem Erde-Geochem 72:3–8

  3. 3.

    Stevenson MW, Manders JE, Eckfeld S, Prengaman RD (2002) Impact of modern battery design and the implications for primary and secondary lead production. J Power Sources 107:146–154

  4. 4.

    Ward LC, Stickney JL (2001) Electrodeposition of Sb onto the low-index planes of Cu in aqueous chloride solutions: studies by LEED, AES and electrochemistry. Phys Chem Chem Phys 3:3364–3370

  5. 5.

    Chen Y, Wang LS, Pradel A et al (2015) Underpotential deposition of selenium and antimony on gold. J Solid State Electrochem 19:2399–2411

  6. 6.

    Salaun P, Gibbon-Walsh K, van den Berg CMG (2011) Beyond the hydrogen wave: new frontier in the detection of trace elements by stripping voltammetry. Anal Chem 83:3848–3856

  7. 7.

    Santos JR, Lima JLFC, Quinaz MB et al (2007) Construction and evaluation of a gold tubular electrode for flow analysis: application to speciation of antimony in water samples. Electroanalysis 19:723–730

  8. 8.

    Salaun P, Frezard F (2013) Unexpectedly high levels of antimony (III) in the pentavalent antimonial drug glucantime: insights from a new voltammetric approach. Anal Bioanal Chem 405:5201–5214

  9. 9.

    Bergmann MEH, Koparal AS (2011) Electrochemical antimony removal from accumulator acid: results from removal trials in laboratory cells. J Hazard Mater 196:59–65

  10. 10.

    Olsen NJ, Mountain BW, Seward TM (2018) Antimony(III) sulfide complexes in aqueous solutions at 30 degrees C: a solubility and XAS study. Chem Geol 476:233–247

  11. 11.

    Awe SA, Sandstrom A (2013) Electrowinning of antimony from model sulphide alkaline solutions. Hydrometallurgy 137:60–67

  12. 12.

    Awe SA, Sundlcvist JE, Sandstrom A (2013) Formation of sulphur oxyanions and their influence on antimony electrowinning from sulphide electrolytes. Miner Eng 53:39–47

  13. 13.

    Tanaka T, Ishiyama T, Okamoto K (2000) Determination of antimony in steel by differential pulse anodic stripping voltammetry at a rotating gold film electrode. Anal Sci 16:19–23

  14. 14.

    Gillain G, Brihaye C (1985) A routine speciation method for a pollution survey of coastal sea-water. Oceanol Acta 8:231–235

  15. 15.

    Brihaye C, Duyckaerts G (1983) Determination of traces of metals by anodic-stripping voltammetry at a rotating glassy-carbon ring-disc electrode: Part 2. Comparison between linear anodic-stripping voltammetry with ring collection and various other stripping techniques. Anal Chim Acta 146:37–43

Download references

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the Center for Resource Recovery and Recycling (CR3) at WPI. We acknowledge helpful discussions with Camille Fleuriault and Joe Grogan, from Gopher Resource; Christina Meskers and Tom Hennebel, from Umicore Research; Marcus Eschen, from Aurubis; and Nicholas Jian, from East Penn Manufacturing Co. We also acknowledge the supply of XPS instrument from MIT Center for Materials Science and Engineering.

Author information

Correspondence to Yan Wang.

Additional information

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

The contributing editor for this article was Bart Blanpain.

Electronic Supplementary Material

Below is the link to the electronic supplementary material.

Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 605 kb)

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Wang, Q., Wang, Y. Fundamental Electrochemical Behavior of Antimony in Alkaline Solution. J. Sustain. Metall. 5, 606–616 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40831-019-00253-7

Download citation

Keywords

  • Antimony
  • Electrochemical activity
  • Electroplating
  • Sulfide