HIFLOAT - Individual sizing of flotation cells

Reference number 2014-01943
Coordinator Luleå tekniska universitet - Institutionen för samhällsbyggnad och naturresurser
Funding from Vinnova SEK 2 250 000
Project duration July 2014 - December 2018
Status Completed
Venture The strategic innovation programme for mining and metal recovery – STRIM

Purpose and goal

The overall objective of the R&D work was to investigate the effects of flotation cell height to diameter ratios in order to identify optimal aspect ratios for flotation cells while sizing new flotation circuits or optimizing existing plants. To reach this goal suitable sampling and test equipment had to be developed, flotation test work had to be conducted on different scale and with several ore types, and result had to be evaluated with regard to optimal cell designs for particular flotation stages and position of the flotation cell.

Expected results and effects

A scalable lab cell has been designed for batch flotation tests with different aspect ratios. A corresponding sampling device has been developed for taking samples at different height. Lab and pilot scale tests showed height effects on grade and recovery. For analyzing large industrial cells a sampling concept has been developed, involving design of a sampler and development of the experimental design (incl. a novel approach to measuring particle hydrophobicity). The results are expected to contribute to an improved description of cell geometry effects on process performance.

Planned approach and implementation

The R&D work within HIFLOAT was split in two parts, involving development of test equipment on lab and pilot scale and experimental work accompanied by evaluation and modeling. Accordingly, the project was structured into work packages for (i) design of an adjustable laboratory flotation cell, (ii) lab scale experiments, (iii) pilot scale experiments and (iv) process modeling and development of design rules. Partners were LKAB, Boliden and Luleå University of Technology. During the conduct, additional task were identified refering to sampling from full scale flotation cells.

The project description has been provided by the project members themselves and the text has not been looked at by our editors.