New Trends and
Achievements on Solvent
Extraction of Copper
6
CONTENTS
6.1 Introduction ....................................................................................................... 57
6.2 Experimental ...................................................................................................... 58
6 2.1 Materials .................................................................................................. 58
6.2.2 Extraction Procedures .............................................................................. 58
6.3 Theory ................................................................................................................ 59
6.4 Discussion and Results ...................................................................................... 64
6.4.1 Effect of pH and Extractant Concentration ............................................. 64
6.4.2 Thermodynamic Part ............................................................................... 64
6.5 Conclusion ......................................................................................................... 70
Keywords ................................................................................................................... 71
References .................................................................................................................. 71
6.1 INTRODUCTION
Pure Cu(I) is soft and malleable, an exposed surface has a reddish-orange tarnish. It
is used as a conductor of heat and electricity, a building material, metal processing,
and metal finishing [1, 2]. Cu(II) ions are water-soluble, where they function at low
concentration as bacteriostatic substances, fungicides, and wood preservatives. In suf-
ficient amounts, they are poisonous to higher organisms, at lower concentrations it is
an essential trace nutrient to all higher plant and animal life [3].
Various techniques remove Cu(I) from aqueous solutions, membrane ltration,
otation, electrolysis, biosorption, precipitation [4, 5] and liquid-liquid extraction.
Between various techniques extract Cu(I) from aqueous solutions, liquid-liquid ex-
traction is one of the effective techniques to extract Cu(I) from aqueous solutions
[6]. So, liquid-liquid extraction is established technologic for recovery of metals from
dilute aqueous product ef uents [7-12]. In this chapter, solvent extraction of Cop-
per (I) {Cu(I)} from aqueous solutions by organic solvent composing of lauric acid
(extractant)/benzene (diluent) has been studied at T = 298.2K under atmospheric pres-
sure. Effect of initial Cu(I) concentration in aqueous phase (5×10
–4
, 2.5×10
–3
, 5×10
–3
,
and 2.5×10
–2
) M in pH = 1.6 sulfuric acid solution were investigated. Extraction was
58 Advanced Process Control and Simulation for Chemical Engineers
studied as a function of organic phase composition, acid concentration, aqueous pH,
primary copper concentration. The copper concentrations were analyzed by spectros-
copy. Percentage extraction (%E) of Cu(I) was studied. Distribution coef cient (D’)
were measured to determine the extracting capability of the extractant. The (D) and
(%E) increased with growth of pH. The results indicate pH, (%E), and (D’) decrease
with increasing initial Cu(I) concentration (5×10
–4
to 2.5×10
–2
) M and they decrease
with increase of lauric acid concentration (0.2–0.5) m.
6.2 EXPERIMENTAL
6 2.1 Materials
All the chemicals were used without further purication. Copper sulfate pentahydrate
(CuSO
4
.5H
2
O) (Merck
99.6% purity), benzene (Merck
99% purity), lauric acid
(probus
99% purity) sulfuric acid (H
2
SO
4
) (Probus R.A
98% purity) were pur-
chased. Distilled and deionized water was used throughout all experiments. The struc-
ture of lauric acid is shown in I.
Ι
6.2.2 Extraction Procedures
A volume of 10 ml of Cu(II) were prepared by dissolving appropriate amounts of
CuSO
4
.5H
2
O (5×10
–4
, 2.5×10
–3
, 5×10
–3
, and 2.5×10
–2
) M in distilled water loaded
with 0.1M Na
2
SO
4
and containing aqueous phase at 1:1 organic to aqueous volume
ratio in glass cell. Organic phase was prepared with lauric acid (extractant) and ben-
zene (diluents). A glass cell connected to a water thermostat was made to measure the
liquid-liquid extraction data. The prepared mixtures were introduced into the extrac-
tion cell and were stirred for 2 hr, and then left to settle for 2 hr for phase separation.
After being allowed to reach equilibrium, samples were carefully taken from each
phase. Aqueous phase pH was measured with a radiometer Copenhagen pH meter
(model 62). The samples was used to 1.8 g/dm
3
H
2
SO
4
, pH = 1.6. The concentration of
the Cu(I) in organic phase was obtained from a Hitachi UV–V is Spectrophotometer
(model 40–100) at a wavelength of 412 nm. All the experiments were carried out at
constant temperature at T = 298.2K. The temperature was estimated to be accurate to
within solution
1.0±
K. The (%E) of Cu(I) were calculated according to [7, 8]:

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