Production of a coal-based activated material from anthracite and its potential applications in hydrometallurgy

  • Hugo Armando Estupiñán Universidad Industrial de Santander
  • Custodio Vásquez Quintero Universidad Industrial de Santander
  • Jorge Enrique Pulido Universidad Industrial de Santander
Keywords: activated coal, anthracite, activation, adsorption


Activated carbon was obtained from an anthracite mineral (96,6 wt % of fixed carbon) from the Páramo del Almorzadero (town of Cerrito, Santander). The anthracite was activated in two stages: firstly, a chemical activation with acids was used for increasing the reactivity of the external surface and facilitating the access to the internal surface of the coal. Secondly, a physical activation at temperature of 800 oC, 1.000 oC and 1.200 oC with CO2 was conducted. The effect of the operating conditions during the activation process on the activity of the coal was evaluated, and the optimum conditions to achieve a product with the better characteristics, i.e., a specific surface of 107,4 m2/g, were obtained. The potential of this activated coal in hydrometallurgy (specifically in recovery of gold) was evaluated. A gold adsorption capacity of 6,6 kg/ton of activated coal was obtained.

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Author Biographies

Hugo Armando Estupiñán, Universidad Industrial de Santander

Grupo de Investigaciones en Corrosión

Custodio Vásquez Quintero, Universidad Industrial de Santander

Grupo de Investigaciones en Corrosión

Jorge Enrique Pulido, Universidad Industrial de Santander
Escuela de Ingeniería Química


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How to Cite
Estupiñán H. A., Vásquez Quintero C., & Pulido J. E. (2006). Production of a coal-based activated material from anthracite and its potential applications in hydrometallurgy. Revista Facultad De Ingeniería Universidad De Antioquia, (37), 31-40. Retrieved from