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Geochemical Journal
Geochemical Journal An open access journal for geochemistry
Published for geochemistry community from Geochemical Society of Japan.

Ag2S solubility in sulfide solutions up to 250°C

Asahiko Sugaki, Steven D. Scott, Kenichiro Hayashi, Arashi Kitakaze
Geochemical Journal, Vol. 21, No. 6, P. 291-305, 1987


In order to estimate possible silver sulfide complexes in ore solutions, the solubility of Ag2S was measured between 25° and 250°C in NaOH-H2S-H2O solutions of 0.0 to 4.1 m NaHS concentration. Solubility changes as a function of temperature, total reduced sulfur concentration ΣS (mH2S + mHS-) and pH. A maximum solubility of 2140ppm Ag was obtained at 250°C in 4.1 m NaHS concentration under PH2S of 29.1 atm. From these solubility data, reactions to form silver sulfide complexes are estimated as follows: Ag2S + H2S = Ag2S(H2S), Ag2S + H2S + HS- = Ag2S(H2S) (HS)-, Ag2S + H2S + 2HS- = Ag2S (H2S) (HS)22- and Ag2S + 2HS- = Ag2S (HS)22-. The equilibrium constants for these reactions are given in Table 2. Assuming that such silver sulfide complexes as above are in an ore solution, Ag2S (argentite or acanthite) is precipitated in response to changes of temperature, pH and total sulfur concentration (ΣS). Decrease of pH and ΣS is more effective than that of temperature. Silver sulfide complexes are more important than silver chloride complexes in ore solution of high ΣS, neutral to slightly alkaline pH and geologically reasonable chloride concentrations.

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