Effect of the Granulometry on the Desulphurization Feasibility of Mine Tailings

Benzaazoua, Mostafa ; Kongolo, Mukendi ; Bussière, Bruno
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 9
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2000
The desulphurization process has been proposed over the last few years for acid mine drainage control at certain mines, which generate low to medium grade sulphidic tailings (-3 to +25 wt% S). The environmental sulphur recovery, which means the sulphur to be floated to produce a non-acid generating final tailings, depends mainly on the intrinsic neutralizing potential of the tailings. However, in some cases the sulphur cleaning is complicated by other parameters which affect the flotation probability of the sulphide particles. In this study, a number of tests were conducted with a Hallimond tube and Denver Cell on both pure mineral and mine tailings. To develop a better understanding of the mechanisms of non-selective sulphide flotation, three types of approach were investigated in this work: (i) pure pyrite at progressive milling degrees, (ii) artificial mix of pyrite and quartz at different calibrated granulometry and (iii) same composition tailings with 26 % wt sulphur at progressive milling degrees. The effect of the granulometry on the sulphide flotation was demonstrated both. The results allow us to define a granulometry model, which can then be considered in the whole desulphurization modeling.
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