ASTM E246-10 Determination of Iron in Iron Ores and Related Materials

ASTM E246-10 Determination of Iron in Iron Ores and Related Materials

The determination of the total iron content is the primary means for establishing the commercial value of iron ores used in international trade. The standard test methods for determination of iron in iron ores and other materials are described in ASTM E246-10 standard. The values are reported in SI units.


    ASTM E246-10 defines the standard test methods to estimate iron concentration in iron ores, concentrates and agglomerates. The methods are suitable for determining iron concentration between 30% to 95% iron. This standard describes three methods using dichromate titration for estimating iron content. Hydrogen sulfide reduction, stannous chloride reduction and silver reduction dichromate titration methods are the standard methods contained in ASTM E246-10.

    Test procedure:

    The sample is dissolved in HCl. This results in formation of an insoluble residue which is filtered, ignited, and treated for the recovery of iron. It is then added to the main solution.

    Test Method A-Iron by Hydrogen Sulfide Reduction Dichromate Titration Method

    To the solution containing all the iron, H2SO4 is added and the solution is evaporated to fumes to expel chlorides. The salts are made to dissolve in water. The resultant solution is boiled, and the iron is reduced by a rapid stream of hydrogen sulfide (H2S). The precipitated sulfides are filtered and washed with an acid sulfide wash solution until free of iron. The filtrate is then boiled to expel the H2S, cooled, and titrated with K2Cr2O7 solution, using sodium diphenylamine sulfonate as the indicator.

    Test Method B- Iron by Stannous Chloride Reduction Dichromate Titration Method

    Most of the iron is reduced with stannous chloride, followed by the addition of a slight excess of titanium (III) chloride solution. The excess titanium (III) is then oxidized in the hot solution with HClO4. The solution is cooled and the reduced iron is titrated with a standard K2Cr2O7 solution using sodium diphenylamine sulfonate as the visual endpoint indicator.

    Test Method C- Iron by Silver Reduction Dichromate Titration MethodThe test sample is passed through a silver reductor. After addition of H2SO4–H3PO4 mixture and diphenylamine sulfonate indicator, the total iron is determined by titration with a standard solution of K2Cr2O7.

    Specimen size:

    Test methodTest specimen weight (g)


    The percentage of iron is calculated as follows;

    Test Method A 


    A = millilitres of K2Cr2O7 required for titration of the sample,

    B = millilitres of K2Cr2O7 required for titration of the blank,

    C = iron equivalent of the K2Cr2O7, g/mL, and

    D = grams of sample used.

    Test Method B


    V1 = volume of K2Cr2O7 standard solution used for the

    titration of the analytical sample, mL,

    V2 = volume of K2Cr2O7 standard solution used for the

    titration of the blank test, mL, and

    m = mass of the test portion, g.

    Test Method C


    T = the volume in millilitres of K2Cr2O7 standard solution

    used for the titration, and

    m = the mass, in grams of the test portion.


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