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Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
Print version ISSN 0038-223X


NETE, M. et al. Characterization and alternative dissolution of tantalite mineral samples from Mozambique. J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. [online]. 2012, vol.112, n.12, pp.1079-1086. ISSN 2411-9717.

Qualitative analysis of three mineral samples from northern Mozambique was accomplished by X-ray diffraction (XRD), microscopy, scintillation, and magnetic determination. Chemical characterization was accomplished using ICP-OES and pressed powder XRF after dissolution using microwave-assisted digestion and flux fusion. The samples consisted of a mixture of minerals with tantalite as the major component, with minor amounts of microlite, quartz, mica, accessory garnet, and tourmaline. Incomplete dissolution was obtained using microwave digestion, with maximum recoveries of 90.25 ± 0.06% and 88.90 ± 0.04% for Nb2O5 and Ta2O5 respectively. Complete dissolution using Li2B4O7 resulted in recoveries of 98.5 ± 0.2% Nb2O5 and 100.4 ± 0.3% Ta2O5.

Keywords : tantalum; niobium; qualitative; dissolution; quantitative; analysis; recovery; ICP-OES..

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