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How to Get Copper from Copper Sulphate

Q. Hello there People!

My unit assignment is asking me to jot down the method of how to get copper from copper sulphate [on eBay or Amazon affil link]. I will be glad if anyone out there will just jot down their ideas or opinions. Thanks for your patience!

Miyase Dogan
- London

A. Okay, I've jotted mine down. But tell us what you've learned so far or what you know about copper sulphate, or anything -- don't just ask us to do your assignment for you.

Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey

A. Well! To get copper from copper sulphate solution all you have to do is to immerse metals like iron, zinc, Aluminium in the solution. The above mentioned metals will displace the Cu++ ions in the solution. Thus you get a ppt of copper metal at the bottom of the vessel.

Pradeep Deore
Copperfield Chemicals - Nashik, Maharashtra, India

June 20, 2012

A. Another solution to directly obtain copper powder from a aqueous solution of copper sulphate is this one:

- CuSO4(aq) + H2(g) ---(Q)--> Cu(s) + H2SO4(aq)

with PH2=25 bar, T=150 °C, reaction time: 60 min.

You need to do it in a hydrogen milieu, pressurized and heated(Q).


In a closed container (autoclave), you must drop the solution of copper sulphate and pressurise it with hydrogen gas at 25 bar (relative pressure of H2, total pressure: 30 bar). After, you heat it at 150 °C for 1 hour. Copper (Cu2+) from copper sulphate will precipitate as copper powder (Cu).


Not all copper(Cu2+) from aqueous copper solution will precipitate as copper powder (Cu). For example if you use in aqueous phase a copper sulphate solution with a concentration of 45 gr/l of Cu2+, it will be remain approximately 9 gr/l in the copper sulphate solution that will not react (precipitation yield 80%). If you keep on 2 hours the reaction, this Cu2+ unreacted quantity can be reduced to 2 gr/l (precipitation yield 96%).


There are also more ways (reactions) but it is a little more complicate to explain and do them ;) here is one:

2 CuSO4 + SO2 + 2 NaCl --> 2 CuCl + Na2SO4 + 2 H2SO4

followed by:

CuCl + Cl2 --> CuCl2 and

CuCl2 + 2CaO + SO2 + 2NaCl --> Cu + 2 CaCl2 + Na2SO4

All these ways are patented Hydrometallurgical processes in chloride milieu.


!! Be aware!!!! As you must know, Hydrogen gas manipulation must be done under high security conditions.

Finally, sorry about my English and ... enjoy it ;)

Enrique Estevez Mejias
- Jerez de la Frontera, Cadiz, Spain

A. Here CuSO4 (solution= CuSO4 + water) plus add iron foam; here CuSO4 reacts with iron to become iron sulphate and the copper becomes as residue or precipitate. Method: take a plastic jug, put in CuSO4, add water, stir well, then put iron foam into this solution. We get the copper residue immediately. It's a 10 minute reaction. This looks like conversion from iron into copper. This is one method of low energy nuclear reaction.

James Chennai
a labour in a plastic welding company - Chennai, tamil nadu, India
March 23, 2015

April 2015

thumbs up signThanks for the procedure, James. But just for the sake of correct nomenclature, that's a chemical reaction not a nuclear reaction. In a nuclear reaction some change takes place in the nucleus of an atom, whereas nothing has happened to the nucleus of any atom in this case.


pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey

How to dry copper without it oxidizing?

Q. I have collected several ounces of copper precipitate that I formed from immersing very fine 00 steel wool [on eBay or Amazon affil link] in copper sulphate solution and it has been rinsed. Now I want to dry the copper without oxidizing it. I don't have access to pressurized hydrogen so is there another way to dry the precipitate without oxidizing it?

Raymond H. Holden Jr.
- Clarksville, Tennessee, USA
December 26, 2019

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