Potencial management of waste phosphogypsum with particular focus on recovery of rare earth metals

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Phosphogypsum is a noxious industrial waste contributing to global environmental and economic problems. This publication focuses above all on phosphogypsum resulting from the processing of apatite as a phosphorus bearing compound, since it contains considerable amounts of lanthanides due to its magma origin. The possibilities of its waste-free processing are large, however they require the application of suitable technologies, frequently expensive ones, and allowing for the individual characteristics of the given waste. The research works conducted so far confirm the possibility of applying phosphogypsum for the recovery of lanthanides, and the process enhances the removal of remaining impurities, thanks to which the purified calcium sulphate (gypsum) may find application for the production of construction materials.

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