Smelting Cement Copper in an Electric-arc Furnace.
Paulson DL; Anable WE; Hunter WL
NTIS: PB 283 856 :27 pages
Electric furnace smelting of blister copper directly from copper precipitates (cement copper) was investigated by the federal Bureau of Mines. Copper concentrations in five different lots of cement copper in the investigation ranged from 62.5 to 82.5 wt-pct. Laboratory-scale smelting tests were made in a 50-kva electric-arc furnace to establish the reductant and flux requirements. Best recoveries were realized by adding 60 pct of the carbon required to combine with the contained oxygen in the cement copper. Operating parameters established during the laboratory-scale smelting tests were used successfully in smelting 20 tons of cement copper during 12 pilot-scale tests in an 800-kva electric-arc furnace. Over 98 pct of the contained copper was recovered as blister-grade metal. The projected energy consumption for a commercial-size furnace was 380 kwhr per ton of cold charge.
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