Special Issue "Flotation in Mineral Processing"

A special issue of Minerals (ISSN 2075-163X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2016)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Kostas A. Matis

Laboratory of Chemical and Environmental Technology, Department of Chemistry, Aristotle University, GR-541 24 Thessaloniki, Greece
Website | E-Mail
Interests: separation science and technology (flotation); wastewater treatment; environmental biotechnology; inorganic materials; mineral processing

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The importance of the flotation process to the economies of the entire industrial world is considered to be enormous. It is a gravity separation method, which is based on the idea of applying rising gas bubbles as the transport medium. Usually following the selective attachment of bubbles to particles, those solids are transferred from the body of water to the surface, where a foam is formed. Hence, as opposed to settling, flotation is a solid–liquid separation technique that is applied to particles of which the density is lower, or has been made lower, than the liquid they are in, by collectors and modifiers. Without flotation, many familiar metals and inorganic raw materials would be exceedingly scarce and costly, because the high-grade ores that could be processed by simple physical and mechanical methods have long since been used up. Thus, flotation initially originated from the field of mineral processing, usually termed “froth flotation”; a typical application is certainly with sulphide minerals. For many years, various particulate solids, in addition to minerals, have been extracted from water by using this effective process. These flotation applications mainly include the treatment of water and wastewater, as well as in paper recycling.

Prof. Dr. Kostas A. Matis
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • plant practice
  • fundamentals
  • sulphides
  • nonmetallic minerals
  • flotation kinetics
  • cell design
  • environmental issues

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Study of the Effect of Sodium Sulfide as a Selective Depressor in the Separation of Chalcopyrite and Molybdenite
Minerals 2017, 7(4), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/min7040051
Received: 19 December 2016 / Revised: 21 March 2017 / Accepted: 27 March 2017 / Published: 30 March 2017
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (2578 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Two kinds of collectors, sodium butyl xanthate and kerosene, and a depressor, sodium sulfide, were used in this research. The study applied flotation tests, pulp potential measurements, contact angle measurements, adsorption calculations, and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) analyses to demonstrate the correlation [...] Read more.
Two kinds of collectors, sodium butyl xanthate and kerosene, and a depressor, sodium sulfide, were used in this research. The study applied flotation tests, pulp potential measurements, contact angle measurements, adsorption calculations, and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) analyses to demonstrate the correlation between reagents and minerals. For xanthate collectors, the best flotation responses of chalcopyrite and molybdenite were obtained at pH = 8, and, for kerosene, these were obtained at pH = 4. The flotation of molybdenite seemed to be less influenced by xanthate than by kerosene, while that of chalcopyrite showed the opposite. The optimum concentration of sodium sulfide for separation was 0.03 mol/L, which rejected 83% chalcopyrite and recovered 82% molybdenite in the single mineral flotation. Pulp potential measurements revealed that the dixanthogen and xanthate were decomposed and desorbed, respectively, from the mineral surface in a reducing environment. The contact angle measurement and adsorption calculation conformed to the flotation response, indicating that few functions of the xanthate and sodium sulfide on the molybdenite flotation were due to their low adsorption densities. The FTIR results further clarified that the xanthate ion was adsorbed on chalcopyrite by forming cuprous xanthate and dixanthogen; however, on molybdenite the adsorption product was only dixanthogen. After conditioning with sodium sulfide, the chalcopyrite surface became clean, but the molybdenite surface still retained slight peaks of dixanthogen. Meanwhile, the possible mechanism was expounded in this research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flotation in Mineral Processing)
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Open AccessArticle
Reducing the Entrainment of Gangue Fines in Low Grade Microcrystalline Graphite Ore Flotation Using Multi-Stage Grinding-Flotation Process
Minerals 2017, 7(3), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/min7030038
Received: 14 October 2016 / Revised: 5 March 2017 / Accepted: 6 March 2017 / Published: 14 March 2017
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (3118 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A suitable grinding fineness and flow-sheet could potentially reduce the mechanical entrainment of gangue minerals in the flotation process of microcrystalline graphite. In this study, the suitable grinding fineness of a commercial graphite ore was estimated by mineralogy analysis and laboratory grind-flotation tests. [...] Read more.
A suitable grinding fineness and flow-sheet could potentially reduce the mechanical entrainment of gangue minerals in the flotation process of microcrystalline graphite. In this study, the suitable grinding fineness of a commercial graphite ore was estimated by mineralogy analysis and laboratory grind-flotation tests. The target grind size of this ore should be 92% passing 74 μm based on the mineralogical evaluation and the flotation performance. A comparison of a single-stage and a three-stage grinding circuit was conducted. Experimental results demonstrated that the three-stage grinding circuit could effectively improve the separation effect, which was attributed to the reduction of slimes. In the end, a more desirable beneficiation result was obtained with the application of three-stage grinding-flotation process by minimizing gangue entrainment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flotation in Mineral Processing)
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Open AccessArticle
Selective Separation of Fluorite, Barite and Calcite with Valonea Extract and Sodium Fluosilicate as Depressants
Minerals 2017, 7(2), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/min7020024
Received: 20 December 2016 / Revised: 1 February 2017 / Accepted: 9 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
Cited by 12 | PDF Full-text (2846 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Fluorite, barite and calcite are important industry minerals. However, they often co-exist, presenting difficulty in selectively separating them due to their similar surface properties. In this study, valonea extract and sodium fluosilicate were used as depressants to selectively separate them by flotation, with [...] Read more.
Fluorite, barite and calcite are important industry minerals. However, they often co-exist, presenting difficulty in selectively separating them due to their similar surface properties. In this study, valonea extract and sodium fluosilicate were used as depressants to selectively separate them by flotation, with sodium oleate as the collector. The single mineral flotation results showed that valonea extract displayed the strongest depression on calcite, while sodium fluosilicate displayed the strongest depression on barite. These two depressants allowed selective separation of the three minerals through sequential flotation. The flotation of mixed minerals showed that 94% of the calcite was successfully depressed by the valonea extract, and 95% recovery of the fluorite was achieved in the subsequent flotation with sodium fluosilicate depressing barite. The different depressant–mineral interactions were investigated via electro-kinetic studies and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations using the Materials Studio 6.0 program. The valonea extract exhibited the strongest adsorption on the calcite surface, and sodium fluosilicate exhibited the strongest adsorption on the barite surface, which prevented oleate species from reacting with Ca2+ or Ba2+ surface sites. This study provides useful guidance for how to process fluorite, barite and calcite resources. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flotation in Mineral Processing)
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Open AccessArticle
Flotability Improvement of Ilmenite Using Attrition-Scrubbing as a Pretreatment Method
Minerals 2017, 7(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/min7010013
Received: 17 November 2016 / Revised: 13 January 2017 / Accepted: 16 January 2017 / Published: 22 January 2017
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (2627 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Flotation technology of the recovery and utilization of ilmenite from tailings of iron beneficiated in Panzhihua was investigated based on mineralogical study. The results of mineralogical study show that the main occurrence of the valuable mineral are liberated grains of ilmenite. Experimental results [...] Read more.
Flotation technology of the recovery and utilization of ilmenite from tailings of iron beneficiated in Panzhihua was investigated based on mineralogical study. The results of mineralogical study show that the main occurrence of the valuable mineral are liberated grains of ilmenite. Experimental results of flotation conditions show that attrition-scrubbing raw ores exhibit good flotability with higher recoveries and a slight decrease in grade compared to ores without attrition-scrubbing. Further, open-circuit experiments also prove the superiority of attrition-scrubbing raw ores. The results of closed-circuit experiments show that qualified ilmenite concentrate can be obtained and the yield, grade, and recovery are 22.26%, 47.06%, and 60.73%, respectively. Theoretical study and analysis show that there are two contributions to superior flotability for attrition-scrubbing samples. The first is that the attrition-scrubbing samples can uncover more ferrous ions on the newly-produced fresh ilmenite surface, resulting in the increase in active sites. The other is that in the process of attrition-scrubbing, the transformation of ferrous ions to ferric ions can be promoted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flotation in Mineral Processing)
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Open AccessArticle
Flotation of Chalcopyrite and Molybdenite in the Presence of Organics in Water
Minerals 2016, 6(4), 105; https://doi.org/10.3390/min6040105
Received: 8 September 2016 / Revised: 5 October 2016 / Accepted: 10 October 2016 / Published: 14 October 2016
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (1294 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
One of the water constituents that has not been investigated in great detail for potential detrimental effect on mineral flotation is organic matter. This study investigates the effect of natural organic materials contained in water, such as humic, fulvic and tannic acids, on [...] Read more.
One of the water constituents that has not been investigated in great detail for potential detrimental effect on mineral flotation is organic matter. This study investigates the effect of natural organic materials contained in water, such as humic, fulvic and tannic acids, on the flotation of copper and molybdenum sulphides in alkaline conditions and in concentrations similar to those found in natural waters. Results show that copper and molybdenum grades decreased with the addition of humic, tannic and fulvic acid in that order, with a larger depression of molybdenite grade and recovery. Adsorption studies using ultraviolet (UV)-visible spectroscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectrometer (XPS) surface analysis confirmed that these organic materials were adsorbed on the minerals surface. Complimentary analyses of froth characteristics, particle size distribution and fine particles entrainment were also conducted to explain the cause of the negative effect of these organic materials on flotation. The flotation results were explained in terms of the decrease in the hydrophobicity of the mineral surfaces due to the adsorption of hydrophilic groups in these organic materials which then prevent bubble-particle adhesion. The larger detrimental effect of humic acid is due to its higher adsorption on the minerals, high molecular weight and carbon content compared with the other organic acids used. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flotation in Mineral Processing)
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Open AccessArticle
The Flotation of Kyanite and Sillimanite with Sodium Oleate as the Collector
Minerals 2016, 6(3), 90; https://doi.org/10.3390/min6030090
Received: 22 July 2016 / Revised: 24 August 2016 / Accepted: 25 August 2016 / Published: 31 August 2016
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (3255 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Kyanite and sillimanite are two polymorphic minerals with the same formula of Al2SiO5, but different crystal structures. Despite their high economic values, selectively recovering them by flotation is a challenge. In this study, the flotation behaviors of the two [...] Read more.
Kyanite and sillimanite are two polymorphic minerals with the same formula of Al2SiO5, but different crystal structures. Despite their high economic values, selectively recovering them by flotation is a challenge. In this study, the flotation behaviors of the two minerals with sodium oleate as the collector were examined at different pH conditions. Zeta potential measurement, infrared spectroscopic measurement, chemical speciation and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy measurement were conducted to identify the underpinning mechanisms. It is found that the flotation behavior of both minerals is different under the same flotation condition. The flotation recovery of sillimanite is much higher than that of kyanite in the presence of the collector sodium oleate. Sodium oleate adsorbs onto the surfaces of kyanite and sillimanite mainly through the chemical interaction of the ionic–molecular dimers with aluminum atoms at pH 8.0. The higher sillimanite flotation recovery between the two minerals is related to the higher electrostatic charge densities of the aluminum atoms in six-fold coordination, which leads to the higher collector adsorption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flotation in Mineral Processing)
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