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Obtaining high purity critical metals from vanadiniferous ores: purification of industrial solutions and residue recovery

Grant number: 22/02213-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2022
Effective date (End): February 28, 2026
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering
Principal Investigator:Jorge Alberto Soares Tenório
Grantee:José Helber Vinco
Host Institution: Escola Politécnica (EP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:19/11866-5 - Development of innovative processes for the recovery of critical metals, AP.TEM


The beneficiation of vanadiniferous titanomagnetite ores is an important source for obtaining critical metals, such as vanadium and titanium. In this process, however, solutions with impurities are produced (which reduce their price on the market), in addition to the formation of piles of waste. Leaching from these piles, in turn, can still be an important source of valuable metals, such as scandium. In this context, this research project aims to develop more sustainable technological routes to purify products from different stages of the production process of Fe-Ti-V ores, using ion exchange chelating resins to obtain pure solutions of vanadium, titanium and scandium. The research phases of the project involve: I) characterization (a) of the resins with functional groups selective to the ions of interest, (b) of the real industrial solutions of the ore leaching and (c) of the leaching residue; II) studies of adsorption in batch and continuous system for the purification of V-Ti solutions; III) residue leaching experiments, with subsequent purification of the leaching liquor to obtain a concentrated solution in Sc e; IV) an in-depth study of the mechanisms of adsorption of V, Ti and Sc ions by the functional groups of the resins, aiming advanced techniques of surface analysis. The routes developed in this project can be later used to correlated ores on a world scale and the knowledge acquired about ion exchange can be used to improve existing or under development V, Ti and Sc ion exchangers. This project is linked to the FAPESP thematic project 19/11866-5.

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