Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Department of Mining Engineering, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Mining and Metallurgy Engineering, Amirkabir University of technology (Tehran Polytechnic), Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Mining Engineering, Qaem Shahr Branch Islamic Azad University, Qaem Shahr, Iran


According to the classification of the nickel laterite, this paper describes mineralogy test is to reveal where valuable elements are located in the ore, in which mineralogical form. The purpose of the sieving test was to study if some specific particle size contains most of the valuable metals. Based on its chemical composition nickel laterite is classified as a limonite type and the nickel and cobalt content was 0.7 and 0.04%, respectively. Nickel is predominantly associated with hematite and goethite. Based on the mineralogical analysis of the ore, it is observed that remarkable part of nickel is located in hematite. Therefore, nickel cannot be released from hematite lattice. The nickel content in the laterite was 0.7% and the cobalt content 0.04%. The chemical composition of laterite equals with the occurrence of 38.9% iron oxides, 26.9% carbonates, 26.9% quartz, 4.8% chromite, 2.7% magnetite and 1.9% other minerals. EDS line profile analyses were completed on hematite/goethite ooids and there was a slight correlation in the quantities between iron and nickel in each individual ooid. However, iron and nickel do not always show a positive correlation. Nickel grade could be enriched from 0.7 wt.-percent to 0.91 wt.-percent; however nickel recovery was only 45%.


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