Tantalum Niobium Ore Mine Concentrates
The Tantalum Niobium Ore and Gravity we purchases:
The refining of tantalum from its ores is one of the more demanding separation processes in industrial metallurgy. The chief problem is that tantalum ores contain significant amounts of niobium, which has chemical properties almost identical to those of Ta. A large number of procedures have been developed to address this challenge.
In modern times, the separation is achieved by hydrometallurgy. Extraction begins with leaching the ore with hydrofluoric acid together with sulfuric acid or hydrochloric acid. This step allows the tantalum and niobium to be separated from the various non-metallic impurities in the rock. Although Ta occurs as various minerals, it is conveniently represented as the pentoxide, since most oxides of tantalum(V) behave similarly under these conditions.
After the separation from the other minerals, the mixed oxides of tantalum Ta2O5 and niobium Nb2O5 are obtained.
Small amounts of oxidizers like sodium nitrate are added to enhance the reaction. The result is aluminium oxide and ferroniobium, an alloy of iron and niobium used in steel production.Ferroniobium contains between 60 and 70% niobium. Without iron oxide, the aluminothermic process is used to produce niobium. Further purification is necessary to reach the grade for superconductive alloys. Electron beam melting under vacuum is the method used by the two major distributors of niobium.
Atomic number: 73
Boiling point: 9,854°F (5,457°C)
Melting point: 5,468°F (3,020°C)
Atomic number: 41
Boiling point: 8,571°F (4,744°C)
Melting point: 4,476°F (2,469°C)
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