The production of Zn from ZnO in a two-step solar process utilizing FeO and Fe3O4

J. Millar, R. D. Palumbo, A. Rouanet, G. Pichelin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


We present a model of a two-step solar process for producing Zn from ZnO. The process consists of the following reactions: Fe3O4(l) → 3FeO(l) + 1/4 O2, and 3FeO(s,l) + ZnO(s) → Fe3O4(s) + Zn(g). The rate and extent of decomposition of the first reaction is limited by the rate at which O2 diffuses from the liquid-gas interface. We verified experimentally that the second reaction is possible. A theoretical study shows that the Zn yield can be controlled by temperature, pressure, and partial pressure of Zn. The maximum overall efficiency of this two-step process varies from 14 to 64% in the temperature range of 2100-2200 K.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-309
Number of pages9
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - 1997

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgements--We thank the Franco-American Commission for partial support of this study with a 1993-1994 Senior Fulbright Research Grant to the second author. Also, we thank Valparaiso University and the Caterpillar Foundation for their support. We thank C. Gudino and V. Farabaugh for helping prepare the manuscript.


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