Study of the use of vertical stirred ball milling as method to enhance the dissolution of copper from chalcopyrite

Giuseppe Granata, M. Minagawa, Tatsuya Kato, Chiharu Tokoro

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


    In this work, we studied the mechanochemical activation of chalcopyrite by vertically stirred ball milling (VSBM) to enhance the dissolution of copper. By using x-ray diffraction (XRD) and laser diffraction particle size analysis, we investigated the effect of milling and milling conditions on particle size and phase composition of the chalcopyrite concentrate. To elucidate the efficiency of VSBM towards the mechanochemical activation of chalcopyrite, we also conducted leaching experiments in sulfuric acid-ferric sulfate media. Under all investigated milling conditions, the VSBM determined a dramatic decrease of particle size from over 100 µm of P80% up to about 13 µm. Furthermore, the XRD of the ground chalcopyrite specimens highlighted a partial oxidation of the mineral. In leaching, upon grinding by VSBM, the increase of copper extraction ranged from a minimum of +10% to a maximum of +40%, depending on the grinding conditions. In order to elucidate whether the dissolution enhancement was a consequence of the decreased particle size or of an induced mechanochemical reaction, we performed leaching experiments on activated and non-activated chalcopyrite sample having the same particle size. In addition, we determined the activation energy of leaching before and after vertically stirred ball milling. The leaching results on samples with the same particle size highlighted a greater copper extraction and higher dissolution rates upon mechanochemical activation. Whether performing grinding by VSBM or not, the leaching kinetics was found to be controlled by the chemical reaction on the surface of the chalcopyrite particle. By grinding the chalcopyrite concentrate by VSBM, the activation energy of leaching slightly decreased from 66 to 58 kJ/mol.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationIMPC 2018 - 29th International Mineral Processing Congress
    PublisherCanadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum
    Number of pages8
    ISBN (Electronic)9787030227119
    Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan 1
    Event29th International Mineral Processing Congress, IMPC 2018 - Moscow, Russian Federation
    Duration: 2018 Sept 172018 Sept 21


    Other29th International Mineral Processing Congress, IMPC 2018
    Country/TerritoryRussian Federation


    • Chalcopyrite
    • Kinetics
    • Leaching
    • Mechanochemical activation

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Mechanical Engineering
    • Earth-Surface Processes
    • Geochemistry and Petrology
    • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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