A UiO-NTNU-Sintef-IFE Norwegian Research Council hydrometallurgy comptense-building project in collaboration with Norwegian companies Yara, Boliden Odda og Glencore Nikkelverk

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The four-year Hydromet project aims at strengthening and developing hydrometallurgical research and education in Norway.

The project is a close collaboration between Norwegian process industry and forefront Norwegian research institutions: The University of Oslo (UiO), The University of Trondheim (NTNU), and the research institutes SINTEF and IFE. Participants from the process industry are Yara International in Porsgrunn, Glencore Nikkelverk in Kristiansand, and Boliden in Odda.

The Hydromet project has two main goals:


  • To educate candidates highly skilled in hydrometallurgy and therefore attractive to the Norwegian hydrometallurgical industry, and
  • to aid in developing new processes and methods that enable exploitation of minerals of poorer quality (e.g. lower concentration of wanted elements and more complex mixtures, or possessing unwanted impurities) than currently cannot be used without economic loss.


The project is funding two PhD candidates and one post doctor. One PhD is anchored in Trondheim (at NTNU) and the two other positions in Oslo (UiO). Each candidate has dedicated topics to work on, but there is extensive collaboration across border institutions and the research institutes are heavily involved in the candidates’ work, as are the industrial partners.


The topics our candidates work on can briefly be described as follows:


  • Removal of Cd and other toxic components from fertilizer production streams based on digestion of minerals by nitric acid (Yara). We are investigating the use of particles coated with functional groups at different stages in the process to retain and separate Cd. Using magnetic particles they can easily be removed from the process stream using a strong electromagnet. If successful, the method can be adopted also for other processes.
  • Extraction of Cd from process solutions with high chloride content, e.g. minerals digested by hydrochloric acid. Too high Cd-content is a problem in the production of Ni (Glencore Nikkelverk) and is also likely to be a worry if the concentration becomes too high in the waste. We are studying the speciation of Cd in this very complex industrial brine to find suitable extraction agents to remove Cd.
  • For electroplating processes halogenides such as fluoride and chloride cause degradation of the cathodes used in the electrolysis of zinc. We look into how, in particular, fluoride can be removed in the precipitation and crystallization processes used in preparing the process solutions used at Boliden Odda.


The Hydromet Project is headed by Prof. Jon Petter Omtvedt at the University of Oslo. Dag Ø. Eriksen has been appointed as Deputy Project Manager.




Jon Petter Omtvedt (prosjektleder)

Dag Ø. Eriksen (daglig prosjektleder)



Få informasjon!

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