Rare earth double sulfates from pre-concentrated bastnasite
A mixture of rare earth double sulfates was produced from a Turkish bastnasite-containing pre-concentrate (low grade concentrate) by sulfuric acid baking, subsequent water leaching and precipitation with sodium sulfate. The results of acid baking and leaching indicated that recoveries of rare earth elements up to 90% were readily obtained and the recovery of hydrofluoric acid as a by-product was also possible. Reasonable decontamination of the rare earth double sulfate salt from impurities such as Th, Fe, Al and Mg was possible by rapid precipitation at 50 degrees C using 1.25 times the stoichiometric amount of Na2SO4. The total rare earth double sulfate content (TREDS) was > 90% and analysed 17.3% La, 15.6% Ce, 3.2% Nd, 1.1% Pr, 0.3% Sm, 0.03% Eu, 0.01% Yb and 0.02% Y together with about 0.7% Ca, Fe, All and other impurities. (c) 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.