Flotation Circuit Optimisation Using a Simplex Evolutionary Operation Technique

Richardson F A,
Organization: The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 11
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1973
Techniques for flotation optimisation were investigated at Cobar [lines Pty:Ltd., in anticipation of the proposed installation of a computer and on-stream analysis. Successful laboratory and pilot plant tests for flotation performance optimisation using the Simplex Evolutionary Operation Technique (Simplex) lead to a full scale plant test using this method. The index developed for" Simplex response evaluation of flotation performance was based on metallurgical and economic criteria. This index was further modified to minimise the effect of head grade fluctuations. The test program was carried out on one of two parallel copper flotation circuits to allow comparison with normal "manual" operating control, and was conducted for thirty eight shifts. Results from the test section operating under Simplex direction were superior to those obtained using normal "manual" operating techniques and demonstrated the use of the Simplex Evolutionary Operation Technique as a method of reducing reagent consumption in flotation but, at the same time, maintaining satisfactory metallurgical performance. Experience in the use of the technique indicated the need for modifications to the rules of Simplex operations. Modifications were proposed, tested and appeared satisfactory.
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