Copper processing is a complex process that involves many steps as the manufacturer processes the ore from its raw, mined state into a purified form for use in many industries. Copper is typically extracted from oxide and sulfide ores that contain between 0.5 and 2.0% copper.
The refining techniques employed by copper producers depend on the ore type, as well as other economic and environmental factors. Currently, about 80% of global copper production is extracted from sulfide sources.
Regardless of the ore type, mined copper ore must first be concentrated to remove gangue or unwanted materials embedded in the ore. The first step in this process is crushing and powdering ore in a ball or rod mill.
Virtually all sulfide-type copper ores, including chalcocite (Cu2S), chalcopyrite (CuFeS2) and covellite (CuS), are treated by smelting. After crushing the ore to a fine powder, it is concentrated by froth flotation, which requires mixing the powdered ore with reagents that combine with the copper to make it hydrophobic. The mixture is then bathed in water along with a foaming agent, which encourages frothing.
Jets of air are shot up through the water forming bubbles that float the water repellent copper particles to the surface. The froth, which contains about 30% copper, 27% iron and 33% sulfur, is skimmed off and taken for roasting.
If economical, lesser impurities that may be present in the ore, such as molybdenum, lead, gold, and silver, can also be processed and removed at this time through selective flotation. At temperatures between 932-1292F (500-700C), much of the sulfur content remaining is burned off as sulfide gas, resulting in a calcine mix of copper oxides and sulfides.
Fluxes are added to the calcine copper, which is now about 60% pure before it is heated again, this time to 2192F (1200CC). At this temperature, the silica and limestone fluxes combine with unwanted compounds, such as ferrous oxide, and bring them to the surface to be removed as slag. The remaining mixture is a molten copper sulfide referred to as matte.
The next step in the refining process is to oxidize liquid matte in order to remove iron to burn off sulfide content as sulfur dioxide. The result is 97-99%, blister copper. The term blister copper comes from the bubbles produced by sulfur dioxide on the surface of the copper.
In order to produce market-grade copper cathodes, blister copper must first be cast into anodes and treated electrolytically. Immersed in a tank of copper sulfate and sulphuric acid, along with a pure copper cathode starter sheet, the blister copper becomes the anode in a galvanic cell. Stainless steel cathode blanks are also used at some refineries, such as Rio Tinto's Kennecott Copper Mine in Utah.
After crushing oxide-type copper ores, such as azurite (2CuCO3 Cu(OH)3), brochantite (CuSO4), chrysocolla (CuSiO3 2H2O) and cuprite (Cu2O), dilute sulfuric acid is applied to the surface of the material on leaching pads or in leaching tanks. As the acid trickles through the ore, it combines with the copper, producing a weak copper sulfate solution.
Solvent extraction involves stripping the copper from the pregnant liquor using an organic solvent, or extractant. During this reaction, copper ions are exchanged for hydrogen ions, allowing the acid solution to be recovered and re-used in the leaching process.
The copper-rich aqueous solution is then transferred to an electrolytic tank where the electro-winning part of the process occurs. Under electrical charge, copper ions migrate from the solution to copper starter cathodes that are made from high purity copper foil.
Other elements that may be present in the solution, such as gold, silver, platinum, selenium, and tellurium, collect in the bottom of the tank as slimes and can be recovered through further processing.
The development of SX-EW has allowed copper extraction in areas where sulfuric acid is not available or cannot be produced from sulfur within the copper ore body, as well as from old sulfide minerals that have been oxidized by exposure to air or bacterial leaching and other waste materials that would have previously been disposed of unprocessed.
This process involves drilling boreholes and pumping a leachate solution - usually sulfuric or hydrochloric acid - into the ore body. The leachate dissolves copper minerals before it is recovered via a second borehole. Further refining using SX-EW or chemical precipitation produces marketable copper cathodes.
Global mine production of copper is estimated to have exceeded 19 million metric tons in 2017. The primary source of copper is Chile, which produces approximately one-third of the total world supply. Other large producers include the US, China, and Peru.
Due to the high value of pure copper, a large portion of copper production now comes from recycled sources. In the US, recycled copper accounts for about 32% of annual supply. Globally, this number is estimated to be closer to 20%.
The largest corporate producer of copper worldwide is the Chilean state enterprise Codelco. Codelco produced 1.84 million metric tonnes of refined copper in 2017. Other large producers include Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold Inc., BHP Billiton Ltd., and Xstrata Plc.
Copper plant or Copperleaf is a popular shrub commonly planted in tropical gardens. The genus Acalypha includes 430 species of weedy herbs and shrubs that grow natively in the South Pacific, and tropical Americas. Some perennials and annuals grow in other regions of Central and South Florida as well. Also known as Jacobs coat or as match-me-if-you-can, the Copper Plant thrives in Fiji and the Pacific Islands.
Most people who grow copper plants describe them as being low-maintenance. These vibrant shrubs are sought after by gardeners around the world for their stunning, coppery-red foliage. Surprisingly, there are many varieties of Acalypha wilkesiana with different foliages that can be white, purple, pink, or green. They can blend beautifully in your backyard or inside your home where theyll add a splash of color.
If you live in Hardiness Zones 9 to 11 you should have no problem planting the Copperleaf outdoors in your garden. The rest of us can enjoy it as an annual addition or as a houseplant in a chic container. Because it grows quickly, you can have it as a perennial, or just bring it inside during winter when temperatures drop.
The most important aspect of growing Copper Plants is the location. Acalypha wilkesiana prefers direct sunlight or partial shade if you live in a hot, dry climate. When choosing where to place it in your garden, keep in mind that it must be in a location always sheltered from the wind.
This plant also thrives indoors in front of windows and areas with maximum sunlight. The ideal growing temperature should be above 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 C). If you plan on moving the plant outdoors, wait until after the last frost. In cool climates, also check the nighttime temperatures.
Because copper plants are fast-growing, you will have a big shrub taking over your garden before you know it. Its a good idea to prune it by half every spring to reduce its size and also to encourage the growth of new stems and leaves. Take care not to pinch off growing tips, as the plant branches out naturally.
Acalypha wilkesiana is vulnerable to many kinds of pests, especially spider mites and mealybugs. If you notice that the leaves become pale and sticky, you probably have some mites to deal with. When mealybugs attack the plant, it will become more susceptible to fungal infections and growth retardation.
Rising the humidity levels during winter can help prevent spider mites that love dry conditions. A humidifier can be a lifesaver for houseplants. To protect the plant, carefully remove all damaged and discolored leaves and apply a malathion solution.
If the new leaves are growing green or colorless, your Copper Plant might not be getting enough light. On the other hand, if the plant becomes too large, fertilize less often. You can fertilize spring through fall every two weeks with a balanced water-soluble fertilizer. Expect a slower growth rate during winter, so stop fertilizing till spring and water sparingly.
This houseplant grows best in organically rich soil mixed with a good amount of compost. Copper Plants are heavy feeders and they grow fast, so you will obtain the best results by planting them in good soil from the start. Each plant needs a 3-foot (1 m) area to grow, so make sure you give it plenty of room to fill into. Always apply a generous amount of water after planting.
Copper plants grow quite well in a container if you provide a pot twice the size of the root ball. When the roots fill the pot and you see them coming out through the drainage holes, its time to repot your Copperleaf. The best time to repot is in spring. Before transplanting, water the plant so you can lift it off. Dig a new hole and place the root ball inside. Cover it with soil and add some compost around it.
Copper plants love water, so their soil must be constantly moist. If you live in a dry region, misting your plant will support its preference towards high humidity levels. Regular watering is a must during dry weather conditions to prevent the roots from withering. On the other hand, too much water can cause the plant to wilt and the root system to rot, so dont overwater it.
If planted in a pot, make sure there is a drainage hole. After watering, empty the tray. During winter, a copper plant doesnt need so much watering. However, make sure it does not dry out or the leaves might start falling off. In cold climates, the air might get too dry. You can use a room humidifier or a pebble tray to increase humidity levels.
Louisiana Red Copper Leaf Live Plant, from AmazonPropagating Copper PlantThe best way to propagate copper plants is through stem tip cutting. Start by cutting a healthy (3-3-4 inches (8-10 cm) stem at a 45 degrees angle at its base. Next, remove any excess leaves from the cuttings. Prepare a potting mix for your plant of 60% normal garden soil, 20% vermicompost or organic compost, and 20% fine sand. Mix it well inside a large bowl with your hands. Fill up a growing bag or a pot with the potting mix.Take your cutting and dip it into rooting powder and then make a hole in the center of the pot with your finger as low as you can reach. Place the cutting inside the holes and water it generously. Place it in a location with partial shade at a constant 75F (24C). After approximately 45 days, your new Copper Plant should be ready for transplanting to a new pot.In conclusionCopper Plants are perennial and annual shrubs commonly found in tropical gardens in the South Pacific and tropical Americas. If you are looking to add a new member to your plant family, Acalypha wilkesiana might be an excellent choice.Besides being low-maintenance, this stunning shrub can add a splash of color to any garden or interior. You would be surprised to know that there are many varieties to choose from, including some that have purple, pink, white, or green foliage.When growing a Copper Plant, there are a few things you should keep in mind. The most important aspect of growing Acalypha wilkesiana is the location. Make sure you choose a sunny location or light partial shade if you live in a hot, dry, climate.Although it can tolerate dry conditions, this plant loves water and humidity. Try to keep the soil moist at all times, and during winter when the air gets too dry mist or use a room humidifier. The temperature should never drop below 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 C). Because Copper Plants are fast-growing, you will have a beautiful, vibrant shrub in no time!
The best way to propagate copper plants is through stem tip cutting. Start by cutting a healthy (3-3-4 inches (8-10 cm) stem at a 45 degrees angle at its base. Next, remove any excess leaves from the cuttings. Prepare a potting mix for your plant of 60% normal garden soil, 20% vermicompost or organic compost, and 20% fine sand. Mix it well inside a large bowl with your hands. Fill up a growing bag or a pot with the potting mix.
Take your cutting and dip it into rooting powder and then make a hole in the center of the pot with your finger as low as you can reach. Place the cutting inside the holes and water it generously. Place it in a location with partial shade at a constant 75F (24C). After approximately 45 days, your new Copper Plant should be ready for transplanting to a new pot.
Copper Plants are perennial and annual shrubs commonly found in tropical gardens in the South Pacific and tropical Americas. If you are looking to add a new member to your plant family, Acalypha wilkesiana might be an excellent choice.
Besides being low-maintenance, this stunning shrub can add a splash of color to any garden or interior. You would be surprised to know that there are many varieties to choose from, including some that have purple, pink, white, or green foliage.
When growing a Copper Plant, there are a few things you should keep in mind. The most important aspect of growing Acalypha wilkesiana is the location. Make sure you choose a sunny location or light partial shade if you live in a hot, dry, climate.
Although it can tolerate dry conditions, this plant loves water and humidity. Try to keep the soil moist at all times, and during winter when the air gets too dry mist or use a room humidifier. The temperature should never drop below 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 C). Because Copper Plants are fast-growing, you will have a beautiful, vibrant shrub in no time!
Miruna is an experienced content writer with a passion for gardening. She is the proud owner of an outdoor rose garden and an indoor collection of tiny succulents. She bought her first succulent 10 years ago - an adorable Echeveria Setosa. Now she owns more than 100 succulents and cacti of different colors, shapes, and sizes. Miruna is a versatile writer and, as you might have guessed, her favorite topic is gardening. Contact [email protected]
GardenBeast is an online publication which launched in 2019 with the aim of providing the latest news, in-depth how-to guides and reviews of popular products to help you make the most from your back yards and gardens.
This work presents a nonlinear optimization and scheduling approach applied to a copper production plant. The solution maximizes smelting furnace production and provides valid converting schedules by simulating the evolution of the process over the optimization horizon. The production process is briefly described and the main models used to predict and calculate furnace and converter parameters are detailed. Though the solution is concentrated on the main elements, copper and iron, the optimization framework enables easy future augmentation with more complex models. A schedule optimization case is presented.
Copper is a good conductor of electricity, and is used extensively to make electrical wiring and components.The purification of copper is a form of recycling. Copper is purified further usingelectrolysisand we call it Copper Electrorefining (electrolytic refining). In industry this is carried out on a massive scale. The electrolytic copper production is processed in the huge copper electrolytic tank fulfilled with copper electrolytic solution. Even the best chemical method cannot remove all the impurities from the copper, but with electrolytic refining it is possible to produce 99.99% pure copper (whatever method is used to manufacture copper from its ore, its final purification is by electrolysis).
Process for the Electrolytic Refining of Copper Raw material:Blister Copper It is extracted from copper mine in smelting furnace, contains 98.5% copper. It is the raw material of electrolytic copper production. While the final electrolytic copper product contains 99.99% copper in it.
How does it work:Copper electrorefining produces copper essentially free of impurities, and separates valuable impurities such as gold and silver from copper for recover as by products.The process for electrorefining copper is typical of those carried out in aqueous solution.
In this process, the positive electrode (theanode) is made of the impure copper which is to be purified. The negative electrode (thecathode) is a bar of pure copper. The two electrodes are placed in a solution ofsulfuric acid and copper(II) sulfate(CuSO4)(electrolytesolution the ions travel through), and selectively electroplating pure copper from this electrolyte without the anode impurities.
Electrolytic copper refining tanks Anode plates are hung by their handlesin electrolytic copper refining tank. Pure copper cathode sheetssuspended on solid copper bars are inserted into the same tank, one sheet between each anode. When an electric current is passed from the anodes through the electrolyte to the cathodes, copper from the anodes moves into the solution and is plated onto the starter sheet. Impurities from the anodes settle to the bottom of the tank.
Copper anodes(plates)casting machine Thecopper anodewill be casting into anodeplatesin molds semi-automatically.After pretreatment removing of tin, lead, iron, aluminum starts charging of the copper material into the furnace which is followed by smelting process. When the impurities are removed follows the slag removal and phase of reduction with natural gas. Reduction is aimed to remove the free oxygen. After the reduction the process is ended by casting, where the final product is casted into the form of copper anodes. The same machine can be used for casting copper anodes during copper recycling or for recasting of scrap anodes at an electrolytic copper refinery.
Pure copper cathode sheets The refining anodes taken out from the refining furnace is changed into electrolytic copper with purity of 99.99% through an electrolysis process: During electrolysis, copper (II) ions leave the impure copper anode and since they are positive, migratingto the negative cathode. From time to time, the pure copper is scraped off the cathode. Impurities from the copper anode, such as gold, silver, platinum and tin, collect at the bottom of the electrolyte solution, deposited as anode slime.
More details on the impurities here: Ag, Au, tin and Pt are more noble than copper, insoluble in this electrolyte and so do not deposit on the cathode. They will be found as metals in the anode slime; Soluble impurities of iron and nickel dissolve in the electrolyte, which has to be continually purified to prevent excessive deposition onto the cathodes, which would reduce the purity of the copper; Sn, Bi and Sb dissolve anodically but will precipitate in the electrolyte as oxide or hydroxide compounds which will be found in the anode slime; Pb is oxidized anodically but will form insoluble lead sulfate in this electrolyte again, this will fall to the slime in the base of the cell. Hence, the impurities accumulate in either the electrolyte or the cell slime and these can be processed further to recover the significant metal.
To the leaching the metalic or raw elements in a dilute solution of sulphuric acid to produce sulphates. The reaction taking place in a reactor and reactor will be design low pressure or pressured which needed materilas in reactor. Leaching Reactor into which is introduced heated air and distillated water, preferably in a finely divided condition, thereby converting the raw materials or metalic materials to sulphates in solution.
Leaching reactor is so constructed as to resist corrosion and to withstand whatever pressure is to be used in the operation or the process. For this purpose, Reactor formed from PP, suitably supported, mounted and reinforced to withstand the required pressure.
Leaching reactor controoled by automation system. Leaching time, loading time will be changed by user if needed. Meanwhile there is a constant monitoring system to measure Ph level and solution temperature.
Crystallization tank work under vacuum presure and heating system to vaporised the water easly from the solution. meanwhile crystallization tank controlled automation system too and monitoring pressure and temperature.
According to customer needs additional unit such as cleaning unit to clean raw material before processing or package unit will can be added to the system. PDE Chemistry Copper sulfate production line is a modular, fully automated, Industry 4.0 ready line.
Copper (Cu) is one of the micronutrients needed in very small quantities by plants. The normal range in the growing medium is 0.05-0.5 ppm, while in most tissues the normal range is between 3-10 ppm. In comparison, the ideal range for iron in the tissue is 20 times higher than that of copper. Although copper deficiencies or toxicities rarely occur, it is best to avoid either extreme as both can have a negative impact on crop growth and quality.
Copper activates some enzymes in plants which are involved in lignin synthesis and it is essential in several enzyme systems.It is also required in the process of photosynthesis, is essential in plant respiration and assists in plant metabolism of carbohydrates and proteins. Copper also serves to intensify flavor and color in vegetables and color in flowers.
Copper is immobile, meaning its deficiency symptoms occur in the newer leaves. Symptoms vary depending on the crop.Typically, the symptoms start as cupping and a slight chlorosis of either the whole leaf or between the veins of the new leaves.Within the chlorotic areas of the leaf, small necrotic spots may form, especially on the leaf margins. As the symptoms progress, the newest leaves are smaller in size, lose their sheen and in some cases the leaves may wilt. The apical meristems may become necrotic and die, inhibiting the growth of lateral branches. Plants typically have a compact appearance as the stem length between the leaves shortens. Flower color is often lighter than normal.
Excess potassium, phosphorus or other micronutrients can indirectly cause copper deficiency.Also if the pH of the growing medium is high, this can induce a copper deficiency as it is less available for plant uptake.
Excess copper in the growing medium can restrict root growth by burning the root tips and thereby causing excess lateral root growth. High levels of copper can compete with plant uptake of iron and sometimes molybdenum or zinc. The new growth can become initially greener than normal, then exhibit symptoms of iron deficiency or possibly other micronutrient deficiencies. If not corrected, copper toxicity can reduce branching and eventually plant decline follows.
Copper, like most micronutrients is more available when the growing medium pH is low, so if copper toxicity is occurring, test the pH of the growing medium. Also certain fungicides have copper as their active ingredient, so it is essential to rinse the foliage off before testing the tissue. Legumes tend to be the most sensitive plants to copper toxicity.
Copper is provided entirely by most water soluble and controlled release fertilizers, as long as they are applied at recommended rates. Several fungicides have copper as their active ingredient and some will be absorbed through the leaves. Irrigation water often provides some copper and in rare cases, it may provide excessive copper. Have the water tested to verify how much copper and other elements the water provides.
If additional copper is needed, we recommend using a complete micronutrient fertilizer to avoid providing too much copper and inducing a deficiency of another micronutrient. A single element application of copper sulfate or a chelated form of copper can be used, but be cautius as there is a thin line between too little or too much copper. Apply the product as a drench and not as a foliar spray as it can scorch the foliage.