Phosphate ores of carbonitite origin are the primary raw materials source for triple superphosphate fertilizer production in Nigeria. The ores are greatly or partially altered with complex mineralogical and chemical composition. The percentage P2 O5 in Sokoto phosphate ore is 24.6 percent.
Rubbernut and Soyabean oils were the local fatty acid collectors evaluated for the flotation of Sokoto phosphate ores. Chemical characterization of the rubbernut and soyabean oils show that rubbernut oil distilled and soyabean have high acid and saponification values and iodine index, confirming their richness in fatty acid contents. These oils (rubbernut and soyabean) are rich in linoleic, oleic and linolenic acids (44.23, 49.70 and 3.14) and (55.8, 23.80, and 5.10 percent), with saponification values for (189.5 and 192mgKOH/g).
Flotation studies carried out using Sokoto phosphate ores, with the collector’s rubbernut oil (distilled) and soyabean at PH10 showed that soyabean richer in linoleic acid produced better P2O5 concentrate grade and recovering (34.0% and 90.5% ). Rubber nut oil yielded good concentrate grades and recovery (34.0% and 80.0%). However the undistilled rubbernut oil produced unsatisfactory results.
Considering P2O5 concentrate grades and recoveries, the local rubbernut and soyabean oils are good fatty acid collectors for the flotation of Sokoto phosphate ores, to produce commercial quality phosphate ore concentrate for triple superphosphate fertilizers, phosphorous and phosphoric acids.
National Metallurgical Development Centre [NMDC], Jos established by Act 50 of 1992, is a Research and Development organization with the mandate to carry out research and development activities for the Metallurgical and allied industries for the development of the nation’s solid minerals sector.