Synergistic Interactions Between Reagents In Sulphide Flotation

Bradshaw, D. J.
Organization: The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 6
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1998
Various reagents are added to flotation pulps to manipulate the chemical environment in order to create favourable conditions for the separation of the desired mineral from the unwanted gangue. Interactions occur between these reagents and between the other chemical parameters existing in the flotation pulp which complicate the elucidation of the behaviour of the respective reagents. This paper discusses the roles of the main classes of reagents added viz. collectors, frothers, depressants and activators, as well as the interactions between frothers and collectors. A case study reporting synergistic interactions between thiol collectors in the flotation of pyrite at pH = 4 is included. The use of Potassium n-butyl xanthate (PNBX) and a dithiocarbamate type collector (DTC) were tested both as pure collectors and as components in a collector mixture. In the batch flotation tests sulphur recovery and grade, water recovery, rate of recovery and image analysis of the surface froth were used to evaluate the effect of the mixture on the overall flotation performance. Bubble loading tests showed that the use of the mixture improved the efficiency of the particle collection process by bubbles. Thermochemical measurements of the adsorption of the collectors onto the mineral, indicated the formation of different surface products by the two collectors.
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