Determination Of Chemicals In A Chromite Sample

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Experiment 29 Hydrometallurgy to Analyze a Chromite Sample: A Self-Directed Experiment Bret Eady, Seth Berry October 17, 2010 INTRODUCTION: The only ore containing chromium is chromite. Chromite is a combination of iron, magnesium, chromium, and oxygen. The chromium from the chromite is used for many constructional purposes such as: the production of stainless steel, enhancing the structural integrity of many metals, and reducing the rate at which they corrode. Sometimes the composition of chromite may vary and the iron in chromite may be replaced by magnesium. Also, the chromium in chromite may sometimes be replaced by aluminum and ferrous ions. Hydrometallurgy is a way to separate the different elements making up ores and isolate the metals from each other. In order for this to occur, the ore must be melted down into a solution. After the metals of the ore have been dissolved, they may be separated from each other by many different processes, some of the most popular are leaching and precipitating the metal from the solution via electrolysis or chemical means. In this experiment the team of students must determine exactly what is in chromite sample, and also confirm the existence of all such metals that should be in the sample of chromite. The leaching technique will be used and precipitates formed via the addition of NaOH to the leach solution. The displacement of iron via zinc will also be utilized. As each metal precipitate forms in the solution, it will have to be separated from the remaining solution and the process repeated until all precipitates have been created and isolated. Next, each individual precipitate will be dissolved into an aqueous solution and ran through a spectrometer. The graph that the spectrometer gives of the unknown precipitate will be compared to the known graph of these metals. The

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