Pyrometallurgy: Roasting, Smelting, Refining & Electrowinning

Pyrometallurgy: Roasting, Smelting, Refining & Electrowinning2017-04-21T02:33:06-04:00
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Refining silver from ore (3 replies and 2 comments)

11 months ago
DieselDave 11 months ago

I'm a micro miner and have zinc / silver ore, also has gold in arsenopyrite. I'm wondering how to micro scale extract the silver without froth flotation, arsenic?

11 months ago
SmartDog 11 months ago

You do not say what size the silver is and that makes a big difference.  If it is all finely disseminated that you are limited to either chemical leaching (since you rule out flotation) or direct reduction.  Both are dangerous and very difficult to do well.  The only process that works well on finely disseminated ore, is fairly easy to operate and relatively safe to operate and to the environment you have already ruled out.

Todd H
11 months ago
Todd H 11 months ago

Your options are pretty limited for this application as a silver/zinc ore likely does not have free silver in it, the silver is generally in the sphalerite matrix and is recovered by producing a zinc concentrate and smelting it.  You may try gravity separation to see if there is free silver (just pan some of the ore).  The last option would be a cyanide leach of ground ore but this is not very suitable for small scale miners.


Todd Harvey - Global Resource Engineering

11 months ago

Thanks guys.
I have a Miller table and am running some of the pulverized ore on it and am getting separation., am able to start collecting it, but its SLOW.
at any rate it looks like I'll have to do it this way for now till I get a facility to set up flotation away from the public.

11 months ago

Sorry I meant leach set up away from everybody and everything assuming it's legal.
Is cyanide the only leaching chemical or are there others that aren't so deadly?

Jose Doneiber
11 months ago
Jose Doneiber 11 months ago

Hello my dear friend.

In Colombia there are argentiferous minerals and I have observed that the most indicated method is to first float the ore then leach it with cyanide, you can do it on a small scale, but in the same way it has a cost, which will be justified if there is enough mineral.

I hope the information is usefull

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