Recovery of Scandium from Leachate of Sulfation-Roasted Bayer Red Mud by Liquid–Liquid Extraction
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The leachate obtained from sulfation-roasted Bayer red mud is suitable for extraction of scandium by liquid–liquid solvent extraction because it contains trace amounts of Fe3+ and Si4+. In this study, a completely new metallurgical process for selective recovery of scandium from Bayer red mud was proposed. The extraction performances of Sc3+, Fe3+, Al3+, Si4+, Ca2+, and Na+ from synthetic leachate of sulfation-roasted red mud were first investigated using organophosphorus extractants (di-2-ethylhexyl phosphoric acid P204 and 2-ethylhexyl phosphoric acid mono-2-ethylhexyl ester P507) and carboxylic acid extractant (Versatic acid 10). It shows that P204 has an excellent extraction ability and that it can be applied to the scandium recovery. P507 and Versatic acid 10 are much poorer in performance for selective extraction of scandium. In the leachate of sulfation-roasted red mud, approximately 97% scandium can be recovered using a P204/sulfonated kerosene (1% v/v) extraction system under the condition of an organic-to-aqueous phase ratio of 10:1 and with an extraction temperature of 15°C.
The authors would like to thank the financial support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 51234008, 51274042, and 51474028), Beijing Technical Development Project (No. 00012132), and China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (No. 2016M590046).
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