Special Issue "Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies"

A special issue of Minerals (ISSN 2075-163X). This special issue belongs to the section "Mineral Processing and Metallurgy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2018)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Nawshad Haque

CSIRO Energy, Clayton, VIC 3168, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: minerals and energy processing

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The increasing demand for metals and their environmental impacts of production are being recognised by the mineral industry. There has been progress made, in terms of reducing energy, greenhouse gas, water and waste from mining, mineral processing and metal production using new novel technologies. However, there are still significant differences between the theoretical, minimum level that is practically possible, and the current state of specific energy, carbon, water and waste footprints per ton of mineral or metal products. Innovation and technology have key roles in closing this gap, such that any operation can achieve production with optimum inputs and reduced environmental impacts, which have consequent potential reductions in cost. Minerals is planning for a Special Issue focusing on sustainable processing technologies used in mining, mineral processing, and metal production.

Dr. Nawshad Haque
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Sustainability
  • Mineral processing
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Technologies
  • Recycling

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Separation of Oxidized Pyrrhotite from Fine Fraction Serpentine
Minerals 2018, 8(10), 472; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8100472
Received: 29 August 2018 / Revised: 12 October 2018 / Accepted: 19 October 2018 / Published: 22 October 2018
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Abstract
The valuable minerals in copper-nickel sulfide ore can easily be oxidized, leading to the reduction of their flotation recovery and a difficulty in separating them from gangue. In order to solve the problem, the reaction mechanism of the octanohydroxamic acid (OHA) on oxidized [...] Read more.
The valuable minerals in copper-nickel sulfide ore can easily be oxidized, leading to the reduction of their flotation recovery and a difficulty in separating them from gangue. In order to solve the problem, the reaction mechanism of the octanohydroxamic acid (OHA) on oxidized pyrrhotite was revealed through micro-flotation, adsorption tests, zeta potential measurements, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analysis. The results show that this is a feasible way to find a suitable collector that can directly react to oxidation products on the surface of pyrrhotite. OHA can efficiently reclaim oxidized pyrrhotite and achieve the selective separation of a pyrrhotite-serpentine mixture in a weak alkaline environment. The adsorption tests, zeta potential measurements, and XPS analyses show that OHA can interact with an oxidized pyrrhotite surface, and the interaction between OHA and serpentine is very weak. The XPS analyses indicate that the OHA collector can chelate with Fe(OH)3 on the surface of oxidized pyrrhotite and form an “O, O” five-ring chelate. At the same time, the OHA collector may compete with the hydroxyl groups of hydrophilic substances on the mineral surface to produce hydrophobic products and reduce the hydrophilic substances on the mineral surface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Oxidative Depression of Arsenopyrite by Using Calcium Hypochlorite and Sodium Humate
Minerals 2018, 8(10), 463; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8100463
Received: 30 August 2018 / Revised: 13 October 2018 / Accepted: 15 October 2018 / Published: 18 October 2018
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Abstract
During smelting, arsenic in copper concentrates affects the product quality and causes environmental pollution. Removing arsenic minerals from copper concentrates requires environmental-friendly and cost-effective depressants for flotation separation. Ca(ClO)2 was combined with sodium humate (SH) to improve the flotation separation of chalcopyrite [...] Read more.
During smelting, arsenic in copper concentrates affects the product quality and causes environmental pollution. Removing arsenic minerals from copper concentrates requires environmental-friendly and cost-effective depressants for flotation separation. Ca(ClO)2 was combined with sodium humate (SH) to improve the flotation separation of chalcopyrite from arsenopyrite. Results of single-mineral flotation indicated that combined Ca(ClO)2 and SH significantly inhibited arsenopyrite and exerted a negligible effect on chalcopyrite. The arsenic content in copper concentrates significantly decreased from 63% to 11% in the absence of a depressant and in the presence of Ca(ClO)2 and SH, as proven by the mixed-mineral flotation results. SH can adsorb on both mineral surfaces as indicated by the zeta potential measurements and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. However, the presence of Ca(ClO)2 increased the adsorption of arsenopyrite compared with chalcopyrite. The arsenopyrite floatability depressed with the Ca(ClO)2 oxidation and subsequent SH adsorption, as verified by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. Results of flotation tests confirmed that the chalcopyrite surface was slightly oxidized, but it remained hydrophobic. The combination of depressants has the potential for industrial application. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Effect of H2O2 on the Separation of Mo-Bi-Containing Ore by Flotation
Minerals 2018, 8(9), 402; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8090402
Received: 31 July 2018 / Revised: 6 September 2018 / Accepted: 10 September 2018 / Published: 13 September 2018
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Abstract
Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is a strong oxidizer that causes non-selective oxidation of sulfide minerals, and its influence on bismuth sulfide ores is not well-documented. In this study, H2O2 was proposed as an alternative bismuthinite depressant, and [...] Read more.
Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is a strong oxidizer that causes non-selective oxidation of sulfide minerals, and its influence on bismuth sulfide ores is not well-documented. In this study, H2O2 was proposed as an alternative bismuthinite depressant, and its effect on a Mo-Bi-containing ore was intensively investigated by batch flotation tests. Results showed that the addition of H2O2 significantly destabilized the froth phase, thus decreasing the solids and water recovery. The recovery of bismuth in molybdenum concentrate was dramatically decreased to 4.64% by H2O2 compared with that in the absence of H2O2 (i.e., 50.14%). The modified first-order kinetic model demonstrated that the flotation rate of molybdenite slightly declined after H2O2 addition, whereas that of bismuthinite was drastically reduced from 0.30 min−1 to 0.08 min−1 under the same condition. Simulation revealed that H2O2 affected the floatability of both molybdenite and bismuthinite but resulted in more detrimental effect to bismuthinite. Hence, H2O2 has the potential to act as an effective depressant in bismuth sulfide ore flotation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Selective Flotation of Cassiterite from Calcite with Salicylhydroxamic Acid Collector and Carboxymethyl Cellulose Depressant
Minerals 2018, 8(8), 316; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8080316
Received: 18 June 2018 / Revised: 19 July 2018 / Accepted: 24 July 2018 / Published: 26 July 2018
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Abstract
Cassiterite is the most common and important tin-bearing mineral, and calcite, a primary gangue mineral is generally found in tin deposit. The flotation separation of cassiterite from calcite remains a challenge due to their similar response to traditional reagents. In cassiterite flotation, sodium [...] Read more.
Cassiterite is the most common and important tin-bearing mineral, and calcite, a primary gangue mineral is generally found in tin deposit. The flotation separation of cassiterite from calcite remains a challenge due to their similar response to traditional reagents. In cassiterite flotation, sodium oleate (NaOL) and sodium silicate (SS) have been widely used as a collector and a depressant, respectively. However, the low selectivity of NaOL and the large amount of SS required (which leads to serious problems in wastewater treatment) remain a difficult issue. In this study, a novel reagent scheme using lead nitrate as the activator, salicylhydroxamic acid (SHA) as the collector and carboxymethyl cellulose as the depressant was employed to improve the separation selectivity of cassiterite from calcite. Results of the flotation experiment using this new reagent scheme showed that compared with the previously reported scheme using benzohydroxamic acid (BHA) as the collector, the separation of cassiterite from calcite exhibited a higher selectivity and selectivity index (SI). The mechanism of the selective separation was investigated by zeta potential measurements, Fourier transform infrared and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Response Surface Methodology for Optimization of Copper Leaching from Refractory Flotation Tailings
Minerals 2018, 8(4), 165; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8040165
Received: 5 March 2018 / Revised: 27 March 2018 / Accepted: 16 April 2018 / Published: 18 April 2018
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Abstract
Response surface methodology is used to optimize the leaching process for refractory flotation copper tailings. The proportion of the refractory combination oxide copper (chrysocolla) is 64.84%. At present, few studies have examined the leaching of chrysocolla. In this study, we examine the effects [...] Read more.
Response surface methodology is used to optimize the leaching process for refractory flotation copper tailings. The proportion of the refractory combination oxide copper (chrysocolla) is 64.84%. At present, few studies have examined the leaching of chrysocolla. In this study, we examine the effects of several variables, including the amount of concentrated sulfuric acid, leaching temperature, and leaching time, on leaching efficiency. Using a response surface methodology, we develop a quadratic model relanbting all the above experimental variables with leaching efficiency. The resulting model is highly consistent with experimental data. According to the model, the factor with the greatest influence on leaching efficiency is the amount of concentrated sulfuric acid. According to the model, the optimal leaching conditions are 85 kg/t concentrated sulfuric acid, a leaching temperature of 68.51 °C, and a leaching time of 4.36 h. The actual measured leaching efficiency under these conditions is 85.86%, which is close to the value of 86.79% predicted by the model. We study the leaching processes using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy dispersive spectrometry (EDS) surface scan analyses. Both methods allow us to explore the content of the main element and visually observe its distribution, allowing us to develop effective methods for treating low-grade oxide ores. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Developing Effective Separation of Feldspar and Quartz While Recycling Tailwater by HF Pretreatment
Minerals 2018, 8(4), 149; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8040149
Received: 23 February 2018 / Revised: 2 April 2018 / Accepted: 5 April 2018 / Published: 11 April 2018
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Abstract
The effect of hydrofluoric acid (HF) pretreatment on flotation of feldspar and quartz using dodecylamine (DDA) as collector was investigated by micro-flotation, zeta potential, pyrene fluorescence spectroscopy, attenuated total reflection flourier transformed infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), scanning electron microscope (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) [...] Read more.
The effect of hydrofluoric acid (HF) pretreatment on flotation of feldspar and quartz using dodecylamine (DDA) as collector was investigated by micro-flotation, zeta potential, pyrene fluorescence spectroscopy, attenuated total reflection flourier transformed infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), scanning electron microscope (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and bench scale flotation. The micro-flotation tests revealed that there was little difference in the flotation of feldspar and quartz at pH 2, using H2SO4 as pH regulator. After HF pretreatment, the floatability of feldspar significantly increased while the floatability of quartz showed no change. HF pretreatment resulted in leaching of SiO2 and enrichment of Na, K and Al on the feldspar surface. Consequently, the negative surface charge of feldspar increased at pH 2, which allowed for the flotation separation of the feasible minerals. This took place via an increased electrostatic adsorption between DDA and Na, K, Al on the feldspar surface, which effectively increased its hydrophobicity and as a result, improved the floatability of feldspar. An alternative process which exhibited effective separation of quartz and feldspar while recycling the tailwater from the flotation was proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Comparison of Wet and Dry Grinding in Electromagnetic Mill
Minerals 2018, 8(4), 138; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8040138
Received: 19 January 2018 / Revised: 20 March 2018 / Accepted: 27 March 2018 / Published: 29 March 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (35099 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Comparison of dry and wet grinding process in an electromagnetic mill is presented in this paper. The research was conducted in a batch copper ore grinding. Batch mode allows for precise parametrization and constant repetitive conditions of the experiments. The following key aspects [...] Read more.
Comparison of dry and wet grinding process in an electromagnetic mill is presented in this paper. The research was conducted in a batch copper ore grinding. Batch mode allows for precise parametrization and constant repetitive conditions of the experiments. The following key aspects were tested: processing time, feed size, size of the grinding media, mass of the material and graining media, and density of the pulp. The particles size distribution of the product samples was analyzed in the laboratory after each experiment. The paper discusses the experimental results as well as the concept of dry and wet grinding and classification circuits for the electromagnetic mill. The main points of the discussion are the size reduction effectiveness and power consumption of the entire system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Removal of Potassium and Iron in Low Grade Bauxite by a Calcination-Acid Leaching Process
Minerals 2018, 8(4), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8040125
Received: 18 January 2018 / Revised: 12 March 2018 / Accepted: 16 March 2018 / Published: 22 March 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (8745 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In order to explore the commercialized applications of the low-grade bauxite in the refractory industry, a calcination integrated with acid leaching method was adopted to remove the potassium (K) and iron (Fe) from the diaspore-illite (DI) type low-grade bauxite. Following calcining the bauxite [...] Read more.
In order to explore the commercialized applications of the low-grade bauxite in the refractory industry, a calcination integrated with acid leaching method was adopted to remove the potassium (K) and iron (Fe) from the diaspore-illite (DI) type low-grade bauxite. Following calcining the bauxite at different temperatures, the leaching parameters, including the sulfuric acid concentration, temperature, sulfuric acid to bauxite ratio, and reaction time were systematically studied. The appropriate and economical conditions for removing the impurities were found to be calcining the bauxite at 550 °C, and leaching it with a sulfuric acid solution of 1.2 mol/L, sulfuric acid/bauxite ratio of 9 mL/g at a reaction temperature of 70 °C and reaction time of 2 h, under these conditions, the removal efficiency of K and Fe from the bauxite can reach 30.32% and 47.33%, respectively. The treated bauxite was examined by XRD analysis, SEM observations, and chemical analysis. Kinetics of the removing process were calculated by two models, and the results showed that the leaching process was controlled by the mixed shrinking core model, which was affected by both the diffusion through solid layer and the interface transfer. In summary, the approach in this work presents a promising process for comprehensive utilization of the low-grade bauxite. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle A Preliminary Investigation into Separating Performance and Magnetic Field Characteristic Analysis Based on a Novel Matrix
Minerals 2018, 8(3), 94; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8030094
Received: 1 January 2018 / Revised: 31 January 2018 / Accepted: 26 February 2018 / Published: 2 March 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (7140 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The matrix is the agglomeration carrier of magnetic mineral particles in high-gradient magnetic separation (HGMS). Its structural parameters have a great influence on the distribution of the magnetic field in the separation space, and therefore affect the separation effect. This paper introduces a [...] Read more.
The matrix is the agglomeration carrier of magnetic mineral particles in high-gradient magnetic separation (HGMS). Its structural parameters have a great influence on the distribution of the magnetic field in the separation space, and therefore affect the separation effect. This paper introduces a novel matrix called a screw thread rod matrix, which has the dual advantages of the rod matrix and the grooved magnetic plate, i.e., the advantages of better slurry fluidity through the matrix and higher magnetic field gradient at the sharp corners. This research on the novel matrix was performed from the following three aspects: the description of components of the matrix, the effect of structural parameters of the matrix on separation performance of fine hematite ore tailings in Northeast China, and the numerical analysis of the magnetic induction properties of different kinds of magnetic matrices based on three-dimensional structural characteristics. Compared with the smooth rod matrix, the proposed screw thread rod matrix enhances the inhomogeneity of the axial magnetic induction intensity on the surface of the matrix. Accordingly, the recovery of fine-grained iron minerals is improved through the resulting combined effect of the radial curvature of the rod and the inhomogeneous magnetic field in the axial direction. Furthermore, the best moderate distance between equidistant ring-shaped bulges (ERB) as well as the best column gap between adjacent rod elements were determined, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Experimental Study on the Effect of Pretreatment with High-Voltage Electrical Pulses on Mineral Liberation and Separation of Magnetite Ore
Minerals 2017, 7(9), 153; https://doi.org/10.3390/min7090153
Received: 8 August 2017 / Revised: 18 August 2017 / Accepted: 21 August 2017 / Published: 24 August 2017
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (4373 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
High-voltage electrical pulses (HVEP) technology was applied in grinding of a magnetite ore as a comminution pretreatment. The effect of HVEP pretreatment on grindability, liberation and separation performance of a magnetite ore was investigated by a systematic experimental study. The results showed that [...] Read more.
High-voltage electrical pulses (HVEP) technology was applied in grinding of a magnetite ore as a comminution pretreatment. The effect of HVEP pretreatment on grindability, liberation and separation performance of a magnetite ore was investigated by a systematic experimental study. The results showed that the pretreatment of high-voltage electrical pulses created some intergranular microcracks inside the ore, reduced the mechanical strength and improved liberation. This gave the additional advantage of further breakage,thereby reducing the energy consumption and grinding time. In addition, the HVEP pretreatment before grinding was potentially beneficial in the recovery of the liberated minerals in the subsequent magnetic separation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Mineral Processing Technologies)
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