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Title: Lanthanides as impurities in the Bayer production cycle of the aluminum hydroxide from Sierra Leone bauxite
Authors: Kim, Lidia 
Dobra, Gheorghe 
Isopescu, Raluca 
Iliev, Sorin 
Cotet, Lucian 
Boiangiu, Alina 
Catrina, Gina Alina 
Filipescu, Laurentiu 
Affiliations: National Research and Development Institute for Industrial Ecology, ECOIND 
Alro Slatina 
University Politehnica of Bucharest, Romania 
Alum Tulcea 
Alum Tulcea 
Alum Tulcea 
National Research and Development Institute for Industrial Ecology, ECOIND 
University Politehnica of Bucharest, Romania 
Keywords: Aluminum hydroxide;Lanthanides;Bauxite;Bauxite residue;Bayer process
Issue Date: Jun-2022
Publisher: Romanian Journal of Ecology & Environmental Chemistry
This paper is describing a careful study on content and distribution of rare elements in the fluid and solid phases involved in dry and classified aluminum hydroxide production through Bayer process at Alum SA,Tulcea, Romania. The source of rare elements in Bayer process is the bauxite from Sierra Leone, a particular type of aluminous goethite-lateritic bauxite, not fully studied yet. Rare earth elements are fairly abundant in the nature, but their distribution is very large, encompassing hundreds of types of minerals where rare element appears as minor crystalline and amorphous compounds, solid solutions, or as ions adsorbed on the surface of common natural rocks. This study data show that Sierra Leone bauxite has only a small content in rare elements. Mainly, only the scandium and cerium concentrations (44.84 mg/kg and 11.49 mg/kg in bauxite residue) may reach the expected values required for eventually valorization. On the Bayer cycle, the rare metals enter with bauxite and concentrate in bauxite residues. Solubility of the rare element compounds in the Bayer process fluid phases is close to zero. In the final product, the aluminum hydroxide dried, milled and classified grades, the rare metals appear only as occlusion contaminants.
Romanian Journal of Ecology & Environmental Chemistry, vol. 4, no. 1, 2022, 45-58,
Appears in Collections:RJEEC, Volume 4, no.1, 2022

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