International Journal of Metallurgical & Materials Engineering Volume 4 (2018), Article ID 4:IJMME-146, 7 pages
Review Article
An Overview of Technologies and Selective Depressing Agents for Separating Chalcopyrite and Talc

Runpeng Liao1, Jiushuai Deng1,2*, Hao Lai1, Jiaozhong Cai1, Xi Zhang1,2, Shuming Wen1, Hua Yang3, Jianying Deng1, Jian Fang1 and Xuesong Sun1

1State Key Laboratory of Complex Nonferrous Metal Resources Clean Utilization, Kunming University of Science and Technology, Kunming, China
2School of Chemical Engineering and Technology, China University of Mining and Technology (Beijing), Beijing, China
3Tibet Huatailong Mining Development Co.,Ltd, China Gold, Lhasa 850200, China
Prof. Jiushuai Deng, State Key Laboratory of Complex Nonferrous Metal Resources Clean Utilization, Faculty of Land Resource Engineering, Kunming University of Science and Technology, Kunming 650093, China; E-mail:
16 November 2018; 14 December 2018; 16 December 2018
Liao R, Deng J, Lai H, Cai J, Zhang X, et al. (2018) An Overview of Technologies and Selective Depressing Agents for Separating Chalcopyrite and Talc. Int J Metall Mater Eng 4: 146. doi:
This research project has been supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 51764022, 51464029 & 51404119), Fok Ying Tong Education Foundation (161046), China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2018M632810) and Open Project of State Key Laboratory of Mineral Processing Science and Technology (BGRIMM-KJSKL-2017-15) and Open Project of Key Laboratory of Biohydrometallurgy, Ministry of Education, Central South University (MOEKLB1706).


Copper-bearing ore containing talc is generally considered as the most refractory type in various chalcopyrite ores, which is predominantly due to the fact that it includes talc and good natural floatability of talc adversely affects the recovery of chalcopyrite. Flotation is the most economical and effective method to separate copper sulfide minerals and talc. For flotation process, there are selective flotation of talc before flotation of copper-bearing minerals, the flotation of copper-bearing minerals with depression of talc, and the bulk flotation of talc and copper-bearing minerals. At present, the researches focus on the depression of talc. The present work reviewed the molecular structure, properties and mechanism of organic and inorganic depressors for talc. The mechanism of action of depressors for talc includes electrostatic interaction, hydrogen bonding and chemical bonding. At the same time, factors such as pH and ionic strength have an important influence on depression effect for talc. The synergism of combined depressors has various novel depression effects on talc surface, which is more efficient than single agent. In the future, separation technology for talc and chalcopyrite develops toward the application of new depressors and the modification of agents. Meanwhile, the development of new depressors for talc needs to consider the properties of associated minerals with talc and copper-bearing minerals. The combined depressors should be developed to maximize the recovery of valuable metals.