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Extraction of Elements from Sulphide and Silicate Concentrates by Selected Bacillus Isolates

I. Štyriaková
I. Štyriak
T. Sasvari

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Using two Bacillus spp. isolates (Bacillus megaterium bI1 and Bacillus mycoides bI2) mineral dissolution of sulphides and silicates was investigated by AAS (atomic absorption spectrophotometry) and microscopic techniques in order to determine bacterial effects on the extraction of elements from samples and morphological changes of mineral surfaces. These bacteria were isolated from soil samples collected from a mine dump near Banska Štiavnica (Slovakia) and their extraction activity was studied in pure and mixed cultures. The samples were in the forms of polished sections, pulverized and granulated mineral products (flotation concentrate - FC, post- flotation waste - FW, gravitational concentrate - GC). The extraction of most elements (Al, Si, Zn, Cu, Au) from these samples was the best after 7 days of cultivation with a mixture of the Bacillus megaterium bI1 and Bacillus mycoides bI2 strains. Therefore, a 35 days bioleaching experiment was carried out with a mixture of these two Bacillus spp. strains.


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