Chemical Engineering Transactions (Jun 2013)

Characterization and Quartz Enrichment of the Hoggar Deposit Intended for the Electrometallurgy

  • A. Kheloufi,
  • M. Fathi,
  • H. Rahab,
  • A. Kefaifi,
  • A. Keffous,
  • S.A. Medjahed

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 32


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The actual advances in mineral processing technologies aim mainly to increase the supply of newly mined metals and reducing the cost of enrichment process. In this context, the solar grade silicon (SoG-Si) as feedstock for photovoltaic cells production requires a high purity. Its cycle of production consists on: a silica enrichment, carbothermic reduction for obtaining metallurgical grade silicon (MG-Si) and purification of MG-Si to get a high solar grade silicon. However, in order to achieve this goal preliminary silica enrichment, it is necessary to reduce a maximum of impurities before the carbothermic and purification processes. This process will allow a high quality of silica required (99 % of SiO2) as raw material for solar silicon grade production, which makes the processes downstream cited more efficient with a high yield. In the present work, we have studied the silica enrichment process using a magnetic separation technology in laboratory scale, which consists firstly in silica characterization by X-Ray Fluorescence of Hoggar quartz samples in order to locate the ferromagnetic impurities incrusted in the crystal lattice or on its surface, secondly to use magnetic separation process to increase the SiO2 content and to optimize its technological parameters before using leaching technology.