The global supply vulnerability of rare earth elements (REE) is driving the need for innovative technologies to recover these vital resources. REE include the lanthanides along with yttrium and scandium. These metals are used for advanced improvements in products such as batteries, magnets and catalysts. Currently, hydrometallurgical processes lack selective and efficient REE recovery. Antisolvent crystallization can be exploited to recover pure compounds without excessive chemical use. An antisolvent lowers the solubility of a product in another solution causing it to crystallize. The high supersaturation induced by the antisolvent leads to high yields, however, this can come at the expense of the product size, producing fines. The process parameters will be investigated to allow for better control during crystallization to limit fine formation for improved liquid-solid separation. This work focuses on the development of an antisolvent crystallization process for the recovery of REE sulphates from sulphuric acid leach liquors.
Ngororabanga, J.M.V., Du Plessis, J. and Mama, N., 2017. Fluorescent Polymer Incorporating Triazolyl Coumarin Units for Cu2+ Detection via Planarization of Ict-Based Fluorophore. Sensors, 17 (9), 1980 - 1993
Crystallization and Precipitation Research Unit
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of Cape Town
New Chemical Engineering Building
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Rondebosch 7701 E-mail: Mel.Scheepers@uct.ac.za Tel: 021-650 2702