Beneficiation of phosphate ore by S K Kawatra

By S K Kawatra

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Using shorter-chained frothers can help increase the froth drainage rate and reduce entrainment. Number of flotation stages • The addition of cleaner stages reduces the overall effects of entrainment. Desliming flotation • Desliming the flotation feed will remove finer particles that are easily entrained. feed • This could also be detrimental if significant amounts of the desired material are also present in the very fine size fraction. Wash water • Spraying wash water on top of the froth layer, such as in column flotation cells, helps wash entrained particles from the froth.

Second, using relatively small bubbles with uniform size distribution will help limit axial mixing. Lastly, the addition of horizontal baffles (perforated plates) throughout the column has been shown to significantly decrease axial mixing and increase overall flotation performance (Kawatra and Eisele 1999, 2001). 9, horizontal baffles break up the global axial mixing shown in the unbaffled column into smaller local mixing patterns without restricting fluid flow so much that plugging occurs. Packed columns eliminate axial mixing but negatively affect solids movement and are therefore prone to plugging.

1 Importance of Entrainment Versus Hydrophobicity Understanding why a gangue mineral is reporting to the froth concentrate— either by true flotation (hydrophobicity) or entrainment—is very important when determining the best method to reduce the amount of gangue reporting 40 Beneficiation of Phosphate Ore to the froth. For example, if a gangue mineral is reporting to the froth concentrate by means of true flotation, then a depressant could be used to make the gangue mineral hydrophilic. The gangue mineral would then be depressed and report to the hydrophilic tailings instead of the froth concentrate.

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