CHEM ENG 4059 - Pyrometallurgy

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2017

This course aims to provide Chemical Engineering students with an understanding of the principles governing a range of thermal processes applied to extract metals from mineral ores produced from Australian and overseas mines. The course provides an introduction to fuels and combustion processes, furnace heat transfer (including the concept of available heat), thermodynamics of solid-liquid and solid-solid-solid mixtures, Ellingham diagrams, phase diagrams and unit operations including calcination, roasting, smelting, retorting, thermal refining, process control and safety. The course covers the processes used in copper smelting and refining, iron and steel making, lead, nickel smelting and Ferro-nickel production, synthetic rutile, titanium and zinc. At the end of this course you should be able to undertake a range of combustion and pyro-metallurgical calculations and have an appreciation of the wide range of thermal processes used to extract useful metals and minerals from their ores.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code CHEM ENG 4059
    Course Pyrometallurgy
    Coordinating Unit School of Chemical Eng and Advanced Materials(Ina)
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 4 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Assessment Final exam (60%), assignments and case-study (40%)
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Raymond Newell

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    On successful completion of this course students will be able to:

    1 Understand the thermodynamics, kinetics and physical chemistry of pyrometallurgy;
    2 Apply basic engineering principles to the design of pyrometallurgical process;
    3 Predict from published data the extent to which metallurgical reactions will proceed;
    4 Describe the structure and properties of metallurgical slags and their influence on smelting and refining processes;
    5 Compare alternative processes on the basis of energy requirements, pollution potential and engineering aspects; and
    6 Produce conceptual designs for pyrometallurgical processes.

    The above course learning outcomes are aligned with the Engineers Australia Stage 1 Competency Standard for the Professional Engineer.
    The course is designed to develop the following Elements of Competency: 1.1   1.2   1.3   1.4   1.5   1.6   2.1   2.2   2.3   3.1   3.2   3.3   

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning Resources
    Recommended Resources
    Reference Books

    J.J. Moore, Chemical Metallurgy, 2nd Ed., Butterworths, 1990.

    Y.K. Rao, Stoichiometry and Thermodynamics of Metallurgical Processes, Cambridge University Press, 1985.

    J.D. Gilchrist, Extraction Metallurgy, 3rd Ed., Pergamon Press, 1989.

    Guthrie, R.I.L, Engineering in Process Metallurgy, Clarendon Press, 1992

    Note that these books are out of print but are sometimes available second hand.

  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course uses a number of different teaching and learning approaches including:

    ·  Lectures
    ·  Problem solving class exercises covering basic calculation skills and process safety tools.
    ·  Problem solving assignments
    ·  Final examination


    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Activity Contact Hours Workload Hours
    Lectures 24 36
    Tutorials 24 48
    TOTAL 48 84
    Additional time may need to be spent acquiring assumed knowledge, working on assessment during non-teaching periods, and preparing for and attending examinations.

    Learning Activities Summary
    ·  the place of pyrometallurgy in the life-cycle of metallic components

    ·  sintering and pelletising, heat transfer and combustion

    Thermodynamics of Pyrometallurgical Operations
    · influence of thermodynamics on process selection, determination and use of Predominance Area and Ellingham (∆Go-T) Diagrams, phase diagrams, prediction of suitable reduction agents and process temperature, reaction kinetics, furnace atmospheres, thermal refining, identification of metal compounds that cannot be reduced by thermal processes.

    Physical chemistry of Pyrometallurgical Processes
    ·  slag structure and properties, slag-metal reactions and their importance, reduction and oxidation of metals and impurities

    Transport Phenomena in Pyrometallurgical Processes
    ·  fluid bed roasting, blast furnace aerodynamics and control, basic oxygen steelmaking, electrolytic refining

    Pyrometallurgical Process Overview
    ·  copper smelting and refining, iron and steel making, lead smelting and refining, nickel smelting, synthetic rutile production, titanium production and zinc roasting.

  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Weighting (%) Individual/ Group Formative/ Summative
    Due (week)*
    Hurdle criteria Learning outcomes
    Written assignments (six in total) 35 Individual Summative Weeks 2-12 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
    Final Examination 65 individual Summative Exam period 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
    Total 100
    * The specific due date for each assessment task will be available on MyUni.
    This assessment breakdown complies with the University's Assessment for Coursework Programs Policy.
    Assessment Detail

    No information currently available.


    No information currently available.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
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