International Journal of Mineral Processing, Vol.80, No.2-4, 169-176, 2006
Effect of oxidation potential and zinc sulphate on the separation of chalcopyrite from pyrite
The effects of oxidation potential (Eh) and zinc sulphate on the separation of chalcopyrite from pyrite were investigated at pH 9.0. The flotation recovery of these minerals is Eh dependent with maximum separation obtained at 275 mV SHE. Zinc sulphate addition improved this mineral separation at an Eh value of 275 mV by selectively depressing pyrite flotation. A different result was obtained at lower Eh values where zinc sulphate addition improved chalcopyrite flotation but had no or little effect on pyrite flotation. These opposite effects of zinc sulphate on mineral flotation were reconciled by examining the surface species of these minerals. The selective depression of pyrite flotation by zinc sulphate was also confirmed in the flotation of two copper ores. (c) 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.