Worksheet: Extraction of Copper

In this worksheet, we will practice describing the production of solid copper from ores by processes such as smelting, bioleaching, and electrolysis.

Q1:

Which of the following is not a common application of copper?

  • A Coins
  • B Electrical wiring
  • C Plumbing
  • D Structural supports in buildings
  • E Jewelry

Q2:

Copper is found in two types of ore: copper-rich and copper-poor ores. Which of the following is not a common industrial method for removing copper from its ores?

  • A Smelting by mixing with air at high temperatures
  • B Treatment with sulfuric acid to produce a solution of copper sulfate
  • C Bioleaching, where bacteria feed on components of the ore, producing soluble copper ions
  • D Displacement with calcium, where the ore is mixed with molten calcium, generating solid copper and calcium salts
  • E Phytomining, where plants draw in copper ions from the soil

Q3:

One of the final steps of copper refining is electroplating copper onto a copper electrode. When the deposited copper comes from a copper sulfate solution, such as that produced from sulfuric acid leaching, the process is called electrowinning.

In electrowinning, a lead anode and a copper cathode are immersed in a bath of copper(II) sulfate, and a potential difference is applied.

What is the half-equation of the reaction that occurs at the cathode?

  • A 2 H ( ) + 2 e H ( ) + 2 a q g
  • B C u ( ) + e C u ( ) 2 + a q s
  • C C u ( ) C u ( ) + 2 e s a q 2 +
  • D C u ( ) + 2 e C u ( ) 2 + a q s
  • E C u ( ) C u ( ) + e s a q 2 +

What is the half-equation of the reaction that occurs at the anode?

  • A H O ( ) 2 H ( ) + O ( ) + 2 e 2 + 2 l a q g 1 2
  • B 2 O H ( ) + H ( ) 2 H O ( l ) + 2 e 2 2 a q g
  • C 2 C l ( ) C l ( ) + 2 e 2 a q g
  • D 2 O H ( ) H O ( ) + 2 e 2 2 a q a q
  • E 4 O H ( ) 2 H O ( ) + O ( ) + 4 e 2 2 a q l g

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