Evaluation of Mica as a Source of Potash
India does not possess any soluble potash reserves and depends completely on imports. In this study, an attempt has been made to recover potash (K) values from the mica sample employing thermal and mechanical routes followed by leaching. Direct leaching of mica in different lixiviants is found to be ineffective with very low K-dissolution (1–5%). Heat treatment with different fluxes, such as NaCl, NaOH, and CaCl2, is carried out and almost 85% K-values are recovered. Mechanical activation of mica and with different calcium additives is carried out to recover potash values. K is recovered in leach solution in the form of soluble salts, such as K2CO3, K2SO4, and KOH, and leach residue consists mainly of calcium-alumino-silicates. Using mechanical activation with flux, it is possible to recover >95% K-values from mica sample. Mechanical activation with calcium-based flux is found sustainable in the recovery of K-values from mica.
KeywordsPotash Mica Heat treatment Mechanical activation Leaching
The authors would like to acknowledge the funding received from the Ministry of Mines and Science Engineering Research Board to carry out the research work.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.
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