Selective leaching process for the recovery of copper and zinc oxide from copper-containing dust

Jun Yi Wu, Fang Chih Chang, H. Paul Wang, Ming Jer Tsai, Chun Han Ko, Chih Cheng Chen

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18 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to develop a resource recovery procedure for recovering copper and zinc from dust produced by copper smelting furnaces during the manufacturing of copper-alloy wires. The concentrations of copper in copper-containing dust do not meet the regulation standards defined by the Taiwan Environmental Protection Administration; therefore, such waste is classified as hazardous. In this study, the percentages of zinc and copper in the dust samples were approximately 38.4% and 2.6%, respectively. To reduce environmental damage and recover metal resources for industrial reuse, acid leaching was used to recover metals from these inorganic wastes. In the first stage, 2 N of sulphuric acid was used to leach the dust, with pH values controlled at 2.0-3.0, and a solid-to-liquid ratio of 1:10. The results indicated that zinc extraction efficiency was higher than 95%. A selective acid leaching process was then used to recover the copper content of the residue after filtration. In the second stage, an additional 1 N of sulphuric acid was added to the suspension in the selective leaching process, and the pH value was controlled at 1.5-2.0. The reagent sodium hydroxide (2 N) was used as leachate at a pH greater than 7. A zinc hydroxide compound formed during the process and was recovered after drying. The yields for zinc and copper were 86.9-93.5% and 97.0-98.9%, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2952-2958
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Technology (United Kingdom)
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Dec 2

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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