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ArticleName Processing of Metallic Bismuth and Production of Bismuth Compounds
DOI 10.17580/tsm.2022.03.05
ArticleAuthor Yukhin Yu. M., Koledova E. S., Daminov A. S., Shashkov M. V.

Institute of Solid State Chemistry and Mechanochemistry at the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Novosibirsk, Russia:

Yu. M. Yukhin, Principal Researcher, Doctor of Chemical Sciences, Professor, e-mail:
E. S. Koledova, Senior Researcher, Candidate of Chemical Sciences, e-mail:


Rare Metals Plant LLC, Koltsovo, Novosibirsk Region, Russia:
A. S. Daminov, Director, Candidate of Technical Sciences, e-mail:


Institute of Catalysis at the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy Boreskov of Sciences, Novosibirsk, Russia:
M. V. Shashkov, Leading Researcher, Candidate of Chemical Sciences, e-mail:


This paper demonstrates the efficiency of dissolving metallic bismuth in 7 mol/L nitric acid in the presence of 325–558 g/L ammonium nitrate to produce nitric acid solutions. Thus, solutions with 415–450 g/L bismuth can be obtained while the transition of nitrogen oxides in the gas phase can be decreased from 66 to 0.01 % and more. The obtained solutions were treated by bismuth precipitation in the first stage. Thus, the solutions with the following composition: [Bi6O4(OH)4](NO3)6·H2O – were 10 times diluted with water at the temperature of 60±3 oC, then they were rinsed with water resulting in the following compound: [Bi6O5(OH)3](NO3)5·3H2O. The product was then dried at 100 oC and baked at 630±30 oC into high-purity oxides. Bismuth was precipitated from the mother and wash liquors by adding a 2.5 mol/L ammonium carbonate solution at 55 oC until рН = 1 was reached. The precipitate was rinsed with water, dried and baked resulting in the production of chemically pure bismuth oxides. It is shown that the following oxohydroxo nitrates: [Bi6O4(OH)4](NO3)6·H2O and [Bi6O5(OH)3](NO3)5·3H2O – produced as a result of metallic bismuth processing can be used as precursors of high-purity bismuth compounds when interacting with acidic or alkaline solutions. Based on the results of the conducted study, an eco-friendly process was developed for Ви1 grade metallic bismuth containing at least 98% of bismuth. The process involves dissolving bismuth in nitric acid in the presence of ammonium nitrate, processing of bismuth-containing solution by water-alkali hydrolysis. At the water hydrolysis stage, 81.8 % of bismuth is recovered as high-purity bismuth oxides. At the same time, 15.1 % of bismuth is recovered as chemically pure bismuth oxides when hydrolysis is conducted with an ammonium carbonate solution at рН = 1. Due to final precipitation of bismuth from the solution at рН = 3 in the form of oxohydroxo nitrate and that of lead, silver and copper at рН = 8 while sending bismuth oxohydroxo nitrate and the ammonium nitrate solution to the metallic bismuth dissolution stage, a minimum 99.9 % of bismuth, as well as the ammonium nitrate solution, can be utilized at the metallic bismuth processing stage. The transition of nitrogen oxides in the gas phase during metallic bismuth dissolution does not exceed 0.01 %.

keywords Bismuth, ammonium nitrate, nitric acid solutions, purification, hydrolysis, basic bismuth nitrate, thermal decomposition, bismuth oxide, bismuth compounds

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