Document Type : Original Research Paper


Faculty of Technology and Engineering, Behbahan Khatam Alanbia University of Technology, Behbahan, Iran


Selective recovery of platinum group metals including Pt, Pd, and Rh from the spent automobile catalysts is investigated by functionalized magnetite nanoparticles as a novel adsorbent. Magnetite nanoparticles are synthesized by co-precipitation of ferrous and ferric salts with ammonium hydroxide, and then coated with a tetraethyl orthosilicate to form well-dispersed silica-coated magnetite nanoparticles. The silica-coated nanoparticles are then functionalized with three different types of organosilane ligands including monoamine (FeSiORA), ethylenediamine (FeSiORDA), and diphenylphosphino (FeSiORP). The effects of initial pH, amount of adsorbent, contact time, and chloride concentration in a multi-component leaching solution are examined in batch tests on [PdCl4]2-, [PtCl4]2-, [PtCl6]2-, and [RhCl6]3-. Among the different types of organosilane ligands examined, the FeSiORA nanoparticles and FeSiORDA, for selective sorption of PGM from the leaching solution, are unsuccessful. It is found that FeSiORPs can effectively adsorb Pt and Pd but exhibit no affinity towards Rh and base metal ions. Under the optimum conditions, the adsorption rates of Pt, Pd, and Rh are estimated 97.5%, 97.0%, and 15.0%, respectively.


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