Coarse particle concentration using the HydroFloat Separator

Kohmuench, J. N. ; Luttrell, G. H. ; Mankosa, M. J.
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 7
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2002
A new separator, known as the HydroFloat cell, was developed to overcome the limitations of traditional flotation cells in recovering coarse particles. The HydroFloat cell separates particles based on differences in mass after the selective attachment of air bubbles to the hydrophobic component of the feed stream. Proof-of-concept testing, utilizing phosphate matrix, heavy mineral sands and anthracite slag, indicated that significant improvements in separation efficiency can be achieved using this air-assisted teeter-bed system. Based on the encouraging laboratory results, a pilot-scale HydroFloat cell was fabricated and installed at a central Florida phosphate plant. Test data collected using the pilot-scale unit suggest that the BPL recovery of the +35-mesh plant feed can be increased by snore than 40% through the application of this new technology. This improvement is particularly beneficial due to the very high grade (-73% BPL) of the +16-mesh particles in the HydroFloat concentrate. This article describes the theoretical basis for the development of the HydroFloat cell and provides an overview of recent laboratory and pilot-scale test results.
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