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CRUNDWELL, F.K., Refractory behaviour of two sphalerite concentrates to dissolution in ferric sulphate solutions, Hydrometallurgy, 19 (1987) 253-258.

The dissolution of concentrates from the Rosh Pinah and Black Mountain deposits failed to exceed a conversion of 50% zinc to solution after 5 hours at 80 °C with 0.5 M Fe (III) in an acidic ferric sulphate solution. The final conversion was proportional to the particle size, suggesting that the problem concerned a surface phenomenon. Removal of the sulphur product-layer did not result in any additional dissolution. X-ray diffraction analysis suggested the formation of an insoluble PbSO4 or lead jarosite coating. These concentrates both have lead contents (about 2%) higher than those of concentrates (about 0.4% ) studied previously which dissolve beyond 90%. Neither concentrate displayed passivation in ferric chloride solutions in which basic lead sulphates are soluble. Electron microprobe analysis was unable to detect a significant layer of material covering the leached particles.