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Electrochemical Characterization of Sulphide Minerals–Halophilic Bacteria Surface Interaction for Bioflotation Applications

González-Poggini, S.; Luque Consuegra, G.; Kracht, W.; Rudolph, M.; Colet-Lagrille, M.

The effects of halophilic bacteria (Halobacillus sp. and Marinobacter sp.) on pyrite and chalcopyrite surface oxidation in artificial seawater are studied by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) in conjunction with X-ray diffraction (XRD) and cyclic voltammetry analysis (CV), in order to explain the influence of these microorganisms on the minerals floatability. EIS analyses on pyrite electrodes suggest that biomaterial from both bacteria adheres to the mineral surface, which is reinforced by CV experiments as capacitive currents are promoted by both bacteria. Additionally, XRD analyses of pyrite samples after immersion in artificial seawater with and without bacteria indicate the formation of hematite on the mineral surface in the presence of Halobacillus sp., which together with the adherence of biomaterial could promote the depression of pyrite during flotation. On the other hand, EIS and CV analyses on chalcopyrite electrodes suggest that the adherence of Halobacillus sp. and Marinobacter sp. to the surface of the mineral have no significant effects on the kinetics of the chalcopyrite oxidation processes. These results together with XRD analyses of the chalcopyrite samples after immersion in artificial seawater with and without bacteria suggest that superficial sulphur might have a stronger influence on chalcopyrite flotability than the presence of bacteria.

Keywords: Froth Flotation; Mineral Surfaces; Sulfide Minerals; Biotechnology

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  • Secondary publication expected from 01.10.2022

Permalink: https://www.hzdr.de/publications/Publ-33856
Publ.-Id: 33856