Energy feature of a multi-flow column flotation process
Gan Cheng 1  
,   Yuexian Yu 2,   Liqiang Ma 2,   Wencheng Xia 3,   Hongxiang Xu 2
 
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1
College of Chemistry and Chemical, Henan Polytechnic University
2
School of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, China University of Mining and Technology
3
School of Chemical Engineering and Technology, China University of Mining and Technology
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Gan Cheng   

Henan Polytechnic University, 2001 Century Avenue, 454003 Jiaozuo, China
Publication date: 2017-05-24
 
Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 2017;53(2):1264–1284
 
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ABSTRACT
A cyclonic-static micro-bubble flotation column (FCSMC) has been widely used in mineral separation. FCSMC includes countercurrent, cyclone and jet flow mineralization zones in a single column. In this study, the energy feature of the three different zones was compared. The turbulent flow was evaluated in terms of the turbulent kinetic energy (k) and the turbulent dissipation rate (ε). An appropriate computing model was determined by comparing the flow field value measured by PIV with the results of the Fluent numerical simulation. Jet flow separation exhibited the maximum k and ε values among the three columns, whereas counter-current separation displayed the minimum values. The high circulating volumetric flowrate means great energy input and turbulent intensity. The higher turbulent dissipation rate, the smaller the bubble is. The better performance of the FCSMC was mainly attributed to the multiple mineralization steps. The floatability of mineral particles gradually decreases with an increase in flotation time, the mineralization energy gradually increased to overcome the decrease in mineral floatability. By contrast, the countercurrent was beneficial for recovering the coarse particles, and the jet flow was beneficial for recovering the fine particles.
 
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