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(11)    Patent No :    AP 2057    (73) Applicant(s)       
(21)    Application No :    AP/P/2006/003826    THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA, University       
            Industry Liaison Office, The University of British Columbia,       
(22)    Filing Date :    27.05.2005    6190 Agronomy Road - Suite 103, Vancouver B.C. V6T       
(24)            Canada       
    Date of Grant &    21.10.2009           
(45)    Publication :

(30)    Priority Data            (72) Inventors   
    (33) Country    (31) Number    (32) Date    DIXON David G, Canada   
    US    60/576,301    03.06.2004    TSHILOMBO Alain F, Canada   
                (74) Representative   
(84)    Designated State           
    BW  NA   ZM            HONEY & BLANCKENBERG   
(51)    International    Classification    C22B 3/08 (2006.01)    C22B 15/00 (2006.01)   

(54)    Title

Leaching process for copper concentrates

(57)    Abstract

A method of leaching copper from copper sulphide-containing concentrates, such as chalcopyrite, includes using pyrite as a catalyst for ferric reduction in order to eliminate passivation of the chalcopyrite surface, the process being carried out under conditions whereby the pyrite is not materially oxidized, for example by maintaining the operating solution potential at a suitable level. The leaching is carried out in an acidic sulphate medium and may include oxidation by oxygen-containing gas. The leached copper is then recovered, for

example by solvent extraction and electrowinning. The leaching process can result in the virtually complete extraction of copper at atmospheric pressure

(56)    Documents Cited :    WO 01/31072 A   AHONEN et al: Hydrometallurgy, vol. 24, No.2, 1990, pp. 219 -236


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