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Recent progress in biohydrometallurgy and microbial characterisation

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Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-25
Number of pages19
JournalHydrometallurgy
Volume180
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2018
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Abstract

Since the discovery of microbiological metal dissolution, numerous biohydrometallurgical approaches have been developed to use microbially assisted aqueous extractive metallurgy for the recovery of metals from ores, concentrates, and recycled or residual materials. Biohydrometallurgy has helped to alleviate the challenges related to continually declining ore grades by transforming uneconomic ore resources to reserves. Engineering techniques used for biohydrometallurgy span from above ground reactor, vat, pond, heap and dump leaching to underground in situ leaching. Traditionally biohydrometallurgy has been applied to the bioleaching of base metals and uranium from sulfides and the biooxidation of sulfidic refractory gold ores and concentrates before cyanidation. More recently the interest in using bioleaching for oxide ore and waste processing, as well as extracting other commodities such as rare earth elements has been growing. Bioprospecting, adaptation, engineering and storing of microorganisms has increased the availability of suitable biocatalysts for biohydrometallurgical applications. Moreover, the advancement of microbial characterisation methods has increased the understanding of microbial communities and their capabilities in the processes. This paper reviews recent progress in biohydrometallurgy and microbial characterisation.

Keywords

  • Biohydrometallurgy, Bioleaching, Biooxidation, Characterisation, Microbiology

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland