Journal of Bioremediation & Biodegradation
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Division of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, Rhodes University, P.O. Box 94, Grahamstown, 6140, South Africa
Corresponding Author :
Division of Pharmaceutical Chemistry
Faculty of Pharmacy, Rhodes University
P.O. Box 94, Grahamstown, 6140
South Africa Tel: +27-46-603-8825 Fax: +27-46-636-1205 E-Mail:[email protected]
Received May 09, 2014; Accepted May 28, 2014; Published Jun 01, 2014
Citation: Moyo F, Tandlich R (2014) Mini-Review on the Use of Liquid Membranes in the Extraction of Platinum Group Metals from Mining and Metal Refinery Wastewaters/Side-Streams. J Bioremed Biodeg 5:228. doi:10.4172/2155-6199.1000228
The current mini-review focuses on the use of liquid membranes in the platinum group metal (PGM/PGMs) extraction from various types of wastewaters to prevent environmental pollution; and for the metal recovery to address the scarcity of the PGMs in the industrial cycles. The bulk liquid membranes have been used to the extracted PGMs from the (acidic) aqueous media with recoveries of up to 96.3 ± 2.5% of the original PGM amount. The extraction time generally ranges from 2 to 24 hours. The bulk membrane liquid in the PGM extraction will depend on the covalent structure of the extractant, the feed phase PGM concentration and the complex of the PGM in question that is actually extracted from the aqueous environment. The advantages of this type of liquid membrane include its operational simplicity, but the disadvantages include limited possibility to improve the extraction performance of the system. Literature data are encouraging as they indicate that extraction of PGMs from mining and metal-refinery side-streams does not suffer from interference from metal contaminants that are commonly found in the mining and metal refinery side-streams, e.g. iron. Thus further research should focus on the application of ELM to extraction of PGMs from said wastewaters and major research drive should focus on the use of the Taylorvortex column and the non-Newtonian ELMs. With the supported liquid membranes, 78-82% of the original PGM content could be recovered from model side-streams. The selectivity of the extraction for individual PGMs can be controlled by the extractant used.