Conversion of iron sand into high purity iron chloride and silicate sand products


Cristian Tunsu




Purpose and goal

The project aims to validate the applicability of EasyMining’s Sahara process on iron-rich silicate sand from Swedish mining and processing activities (Boliden). Sahara was originally designed to recover iron chloride coagulant from sewage sludge ash silicate sand that contains high amounts of silicates and iron oxides. The technology has big potential to decontaminate the abovementioned mining sream and convert it to high purity iron chloride for use in wastewater treatment; and iron-free silicate sand for industrial use, e.g., construction, slag former, glass manufacturing.

Expected results and effects

Sahara has potential to: change production of iron chloride coagulants for water treatment by using iron sand mining streams that today have neutral to negative value; reduce the amounts of such mining streams disposed of in landfills due to limited applicability; expand the application range of silicate mining streams by further removing unwanted fractions (iron, heavy metals) and concentrating the silicate fraction; and produce clean silicate sand for applications where the requirements for composition and purity are higher, e.g., metal production, glass production.

Planned approach and implementation

The active partners will be EasyMining, Swerim and Boliden. EasyMining will be the coordinator and be responsible for process preparations and development, experimental trials, evaluation, reporting, communication, and dissemination. Swerim will test and validate the recovered silica sand product for different applications and Boliden will supply the iron sand feed and evaluate the results. In addition, EasyMining already cooperates with other relevant stakeholders interested in product samples for evaluation and validation.