Filtration Properties of Ferric Hydroxide Precipitate in Nickel Production
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Ferric iron removal from the nickel electrolyte at Glencore Nikkelverk AS in Kristiansand, Norway, is achieved by precipitation of iron hydroxide followed by filtration, and it is desirable to improve filtration properties of the precipitated iron hydroxide in order to decrease the filtration time. The effect of increasing the residence time from the current 45 min to 75 min and temperature from 65 °C to 90 °C on the filtration properties of the precipitated iron hydroxide (akaganéite) was studied by simulating the industrial process conditions in a continuous reactor setup operating at steady state, using ferrous-containing process solution as feed material. It was possible to decrease the filter cake resistance by both increasing residence time and temperature, but temperature gave the most pronounced effect and reduced the filter cake resistance by one order of magnitude.