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Recovery of Copper and DCA from Simulated Micellar Enhanced Ultrafiltration (MEUF)Waste Stream

Authors: Chuan-Kun Liu, Chi-Wang Li


Simultaneous recovery of copper and DCA from simulated MEUF concentrated stream was investigated. Effects of surfactant (DCA) and metal (copper) concentrations, surfactant to metal molar ratio (S/M ratio), electroplating voltage, EDTA concentration, solution pH, and salt concentration on metal recovery and current efficiency were studied. Electric voltage of -0.5 V was shown to be optimum operation condition in terms of Cu recovery, current efficiency, and surfactant recovery. Increasing Cu recovery and current efficiency were observed with increases of Cu concentration while keeping concentration of DCA constant. However, increasing both Cu and DCA concentration while keeping S/M ratio constant at 2.5 showed detrimental effect on Cu recovery at DCA concentration higher than 15 mM. Cu recovery decreases with increasing pH while current efficiency showed an opposite trend. It is believed that conductivity is the main cause for discrepancy of Cu recovery and current efficiency observed at different pH. Finally, it was shown that EDTA had adverse effect on both Cu recovery and current efficiency while addition of NaCl salt had negative impact on current efficiency at concentration higher than 8000 mg/L.

Keywords: metal recovery, MEUF waste, surfactant, electroplating.

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