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Fields of expertise of François CARDARELLI

Description of capabilities
Molten Salts Electrochemistry

High Temperature Pyrochemistry

Purification of
Liquid Metals

Carbo-chlorination of Ores

• Design and Construction of High Temperature Furnaces
- Design and construction of thermal insulation, power supply and instrumentation.
- Selection of refractories and castables for thermal insulation.
- Heat transfer and electrical calculations.
- Safety calculations (e.g., pressure vessels, flares, combustion).
- Health and safety procedures and personel training.

Measurement of Physical Properties of Molten Salts and Ionic Melts
- Density and dynamic viscosity of molten chlorides and fluorides.
- Surface tension, wetting and contact angle of molten chlorides and fluorides (sessile drop and bubble pressure).
- High temperature calorimetry (TGA, DTA, DTC).
- Thermodynamic properties from electromotive force measurements (emf).
- Electrical conductivity.
- Vapor pressure and vapor-liquid equilibrium of molten halides.
- Binary phase diagram determination.

Selection of Corrosion Resistant Materials
- Refractory metals and their alloys (e.g., Ti, Zr, Hf, V, Nb, Ta, Cr, Mo, W).
- Precious and noble metals (e.g.,Cu, Ag, Au).
- Platinum Group Metals (e.g.,Ru, Rh, Pd, Os, Ir, Pt).
- Advanced ceramics (e.g., C, SiO2, MgO, CaO, Al2O3, ZrO2, BN, Si3N4).
- Corrosion resistant materials and coatings in molten metal fluorides and chlorides.
- Corrosion resistant materials and coatings in molten caustic alkali-metals hydroxides (e.g., NaOH, KOH).
- Corrosion resistant materials and coatings in molten alkali-metals carbonates and nitrates.
- Corrosion resistant materials and coatings in weak and strong mineral acids (e.g., HF, HCl, H2SO4, HNO3).
- Corrosion resistant materials and coatings in iodine-hydroiodic mixtures (e.g., HI-I2).
- Corrosion resistant materials and coatings in bromine-hydrobromic mixtures (e.g., HBr-Br2).

Electrochemical Measurements
- Steady state and transient voltammetry.
- Electrical conductivity and transport properties.
- Fabrication of reference electrodes (e.g., chloride, fluoride, and oxide melts).
- Dissolved oxygen
in molten chlorides and fluorides uing an oxygen probe.

Electrorefining and Electrowinning
- Refractory metals (e.g., Ti, Zr, Hf, V, Nb, Ta)  in molten salt electrolytes.
- Inert anode for electrowinning aluminum (e.g., metals and alloys, advanced ceramics, cermets)
- Lithium and sodium metal in molten chlorides and molten carbonates.
- Electrowinning and refining of niobium and tantalum metal from their oxides.
- Tantalum bio-implants by electrodeposition in molten salts.
- Metallothermic reduction of reactive and refractory metal oxides
(e.g., aluminothermic, calciothermic).

Carbo-chlorination of Titanium and Niobium (Columbium) rich Feedstocks
- Design of bench and pilot scale chlorinator (i.e., fluidized bed, feeder, cyclones and settling chambers).
- Low temperature carbo-chlorination of titanium oxycarbides (TiOCs) and oxynitrides (TiONs).
- Carbo-chlorination of ferroniobium (FeNb) and ferrotantalumniobium (FeTaNb).
- Monitoring of phosgene (COCl2) concentrations in off-gases and refractory metal chlorides.
- Reduction of carryover by various techniques (e.g., quenching, freeboard expansion, cyclones).

Purification and Handling of Liquid Alkali Metals
- Purification of liquid lithium metal and sodium metal from solid inclusions.
- Management of lithium and sodium metal fires (Class D).

Electrochemical Processes

Industrial Electrochemistry
Preparation and Selection of Industrial Electrode Materials
- Dimensionally stable anodes (DSA) for oxygen evolution in acidic media
(i.e., DSA-O2, DSA-IrO2).
- Preparation of mixed metal oxides anodes (MMO).
- Service life and failure mode analysis of electrode materials in harsh environments.
- Benchmarking of commercial electrode materials (MMO, DSA, Ebonex, Lead anodes).

Selection of Separators and Membranes
- Service life and failure mode analysis of ion exchange membrane materials in harsh environments.
- Benchmarking of commercial ion exchange membrane materials.

Surface finishing of refractory metals
- Chemical and electrolytic polishing
of titanium, zirconium, tantalum, niobium and molybdenum.

Scale-up of Electrolyzers
- From bench scale [MP-cell (Electrocell AB) and FM01 (ICI Ltd.)] to pre-pilot scale [FM21 (ICI Ltd.)].
- Polymer concrete rectangular cells, and EMEW cells

Recycling and Treatment of

Industrial Wastes and Mining Residues

Electrometallurgical Processes

Hydrometallurgical Processes

Pyrometallurgical Processes
Recovering Value-added Metals from Industrial Wastes and Mining Resisues
- Hydrometallurgical processes for the recovery of vanadium and lithium from spent lithium batteries.
- Pyrometallurgical processes for the recovery of vanadium and lithium from spent lithium batteries.
- Electrochemical recovery of chlorine from chlorination wastes and hydrochloric acid from spent pickling liquors.
- Regeneration of sulfuric and hydrochloric acids and recovery of metallic iron from the pregnant leach solutions (PLS) by-produced during the high pressure acid leaching (HPAL) of rare earth (REO) ores and concentrates (e.g., bastnaesite, loparite, xenotime, monazite, and lanthanide-rich absorption clays).
- Regeneration of sulfuric and hydrochloric acids and recovery of metallic iron and manganese from the pregnant leach solutions by-produced during the caustic fusion, sulfate digestion or soda ash roasting followed by pressure acid leaching of niobium-rich ores and concentrates (e.g., pyrochlore, columbite, niobite).
- Regeneration of sulfuric and hydrochloric acids and recovery of metallic iron and manganese from the pregnant leach solutions by-produced during the the caustic fusion, sulfate digestion or soda ash roasting followed by pressure acid leaching of tantalum-rich ores and concentrates (e.g., tantalite, wodginite, microlite, samarskite, etc).
- Regeneration of sulfuric acid, hydrochloric acid and spent etchants from the titanium and steelmaking industries.
- Recovery of traces of heavy metals from industrial effluents and acid mine drainage (AMD) by slacking and ion-exchange resins (IX).

- Recovery of minor metals (e.g., Cd, Hg, Se, Te, In, Ga) from industrial wastes, mining residues and effluents.
- Chemical dissolution and recovery of gold metal from precious metal residues and electronic scrap.
- Extraction of heavy rare earths elemens (HREEs) from tantalum and niobium ores and concentrates.

Treatment of Organic Wastes

Electrochemical Oxidation


Electrochemical Destruction of Agricultural Wastes
- Electrochemical oxidation of swine manure.
- Electrochemical removal of heavy and toxic metals from wastewaters.
- Electrochemical treatment of wastewaters containing organic pollutants.

Nuclear Chemistry

Experimental Techniques
- Design and construction of scintillating detectors.
- Ultra-traces analysis by neutron activation (NAA).
- Radioactivity from rare earths concentrates (monazite, bastnaesite, xenotime, and loparite).
- NORM and TENORM in the mining, mineral processing and metallurgical industries.
- Radiolysis studies.
- Polymerization by gamma irradiation.
- High doses rate dosimetry (Fricke dosimeter).

- Nuclear structure and radionuclides.
- Radioactivity transformations and reactions.
- Radioactive decay (branching and secular equilibrium).
- Radiation effects on matter.
- Nuclear detectors and measurement techniques.
- Neutronics and nuclear power reactors.
- Nuclear fuel cycle.

Inorganic Chemistry

Electroanalytical Chemistry
Inorganic Chemistry of Less Common Elements and Minor Metals
- Chemistry of titanium, zirconium and hafnium  (occurrence, preparation, compounds).
- Chemistry of vanadium compounds and vanadates (extraction of vanadium by alkaline roasting, inorganic and organic acid leaching, alkaline leaching, digestion, or solvent extraction; stability diagram of vanadium species in acidic and alkaline aqueous solutions according to the total concentration of vanadium, pH and redox conditions)
- Chemistry of tantalum and niobium (columbium).
- Chemistry of lithium.
- Chemistry of selenium and tellurium.

Electroanalytical Techniques
- Transient and steady state voltammetry and polarography.
- Anodic stripping voltammetry (ASV).
- Potentiometry and conductommetry.

- Electrochemical studies of the speciation of arsenic, cadmium and mercury at trace levels.
- Characterization and quality control of hard anodizing coatings (breakdown voltage).
Rechargeable and Secondary Lithium Batteries
Lithium Metal Polymer Batteries
- Metallurgy and purification of battery grade lithium metal ingot.
- Processing of ultra thin film and foil of lithium metal.
Design and performances calculations of the electrochemical cell (EC) .
- Cycling and data acquisition.
- Thermodynamic calculations and evaluation of thermal stability and abuse testing.
- Pyrometallurgical and hydrometallurgical recycling of cell materials.
Crystallography, Mineralogy and Petrography

Mineral Dressing and Beneficiation

Geological Exploration and Mining Prospection

Applied Mineralogy and Petrography
Identification of Minerals, Ores and Rocks
- Transmitted light polarizing microscope
and thin sections (minerals, rocks, cements, refractories).
- Reflected light microscopy, opaque minerals and ores metallography.
- Practical mineral identification techniques and optical crystallography (orthoscopic and conoscopic microscopy)
- Mineral dressing (heavy liquids, elutriation, flotation, magnetic separation).
- X-ray diffraction (Laue, Debye-Scherrer, Bragg-Brentano).
- Pyrognostic and microchemical tests.
- Semi-micro inorganic qualitative chemical analysis.

Mineral Dressing Techniques and Ore Beneficiation
- Crushing and grinding
- Gravity separation (heavy media, jigs, spirals)
- Magnetic and Electrostatic Separation
- Froth flotation

Geological Exploration and Mining Prospection
- Sourcing of strategic metals (lithium, vanadium, niobium, tantalum, tungsten and thorium).
- Underground (abandonned or active) mine sites visits with team of geologists and mining engineers.
- Due Diligence.

Process Economics and Project Management
- Project Management.
- Plant Auditing and Due Diligence.
- Capital Cost (CAPEX) Estimates.
- Operating Cost (OPEX) Estimates.
- Financial Evaluation and Sensitivity Analysis.
- Business Plan.
- Control Plan.
Health and Safety
- Risk Evaluation.
- Personel Training.
- HAZOP Review.
Technical Writing, Training and Information Search
- Reference Books.
- Patents.
- Articles.
- Professional Reports.
- Comprehensive Bibliographical Survey.
- Access to online databases: STN, Chemical Abstracts, CISTI, British Library, National Patent Offices.
- On-site courses: Metrology - Materials Selection - Electrochemistry - Radioactivity - Mineralogy.
- Scientific and technical translations: English, French, Italian.
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Keywords: maths, physics, mechanics, quantum mechanics, relativity, electricity, electrostatic, electromagnetism, magnetism, thermodynamics, acoustics, optics, chemistry, general chemistry, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, semi-micro qualitative analysis, quantitative analysis, physical chemistry, radiochemistry, nuclear chemistry, electrochemistry, spectrochemistry, surface chemistry, industrial chemistry, chemical engineering, electrochemical engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, thermal engineering, civil engineering, nuclear engineering, materials engineering, materials science, materials data, properties of materials properties, aqueous electrolytes, electrolysis, electrodics, electrode kinetics, corrosion science, electrodeposition, electrowinning, electrorefining, electrocatalysis, electrodes, inert anode, dimensionally stable anodes (DSA®), chlorine evolution, ruthenium dioxide (RuO2), DSA-Cl2, DSA-RuO2, oxygen evolution, iridium dioxide (IrO2), DSA-O2, DSA-IrO2, mixed metal oxides (MMO), activated titanium anodes, oxide coated titanium anodes, lead anodes, lead-silver anodes, lead dioxide (PbO2), spinel electrodes, ferrites, cobaltites, lithium metal, lithium batteries, lithium ion batteries, lithium polymer batteries, fuel cells, molten salts electrolytes, molten slags, liquid metals, titanium metal, titania, titania slag, titanium slag, titanium dioxide (TiO2), titanates, corrosion resistance, ferrous metals (Fe, Co, Ni, Mn), pig iron and steel, cobalt and cobalt alloys, nickel and nickel alloys, manganese, ferroalloys, ferrosilicon, ferrophosphorus, ferrochromium, silico-ferromanganese, ferrovanadium, ferromolybdenum, ferrotungsten, ferrotitanium, common nonferrous metals (Al, Cu, Zn, Pb, Sn), aluminium and aluminum alloys, aluminum and aluminum alloys, copper and copper alloys, zinc and zinc alloys, lead, tin, light metals, less common metals, alkali-metals, alkaline-earth metals, refractory metals (Ti, Zr, Hf, V, Nb, Ta, Cr, Mo, W, Re), titanium and titanium alloys, zirconium and zirconium alloys, hafnium and hafnium alloys, vanadium and vanadium alloys, niobium and niobium alloys, columbium and columbium alloys, tantalum and tantalum alloys, chromium, molybdenum and molybdenum alloys, tungsten and tungsten alloys, wolfram, rhenium and rhenium alloys, reactive metals, noble and precious metals (Ag, Au), silver, gold, platinum group metals (PGMs, Ru, Rh, Pd, Os, Ir, Pt), ruthenium, rhodium, palladium, osmium, iridium, platinum, rare earths, scandium, yttrium, lanthanum (Sc, Y, La), lanthanides, actinides, uranides (Th, Pa, U, Np, Pu) and curides, uranium, thorium, plutonium, heavy metals (Zn, Cd, Hg, In, Tl, Pb, Bi), mercury, cadmium, nonmetals, semimetals, metalloids (Si, Ge, As, Sb, Se, Te), silicon, germanium, arsenic, antimony, selenium, tellurium, semiconductors, superconductors, advanced ceramics, refractories, glasses, dielectrics, hard and soft magnetics, minerals, ores, rocks, soils, meteorites,metrology, measurements, scientific units, weights and measures, conversion factors, conversion tables, handbooks, equivalences, manuals, guide, système international d'unités, SI, SI derived units, MKSA, Giorgi, metric system, US customary system, American units, US units, international electrical units, IEUS, centimeter-gram-second, CGS, emu and esu, MKpS, meter-ton-second, MTS, foot-pound-second, Stroud's system, FPS, Imperial units, British units, UK units, atomic units, au, ancient systems of units, national systems of units, extractive metallurgy, pyrometallurgy, hydrometallurgy, earth's sciences, mineralogy, crystallography, petrology, petrography, geology, geophysics, geochemistry, biology, biochemistry, bio-implants, medecine, stable isotopes, primordial, cosmogenic, artificial, nuclides,  radionuclides, radioactivity, x-rays, alpha, beta, gamma, neutron, radiations, nuclear detectors, scintillation, nuclear fuel cycle, spent nuclear fuel, natural radioactivity.