Pre-sorting of asymmetric feeds using collective particle ejection
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Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Rolf Arne Kleiv   

Dept. of Geology and Min. Resources Eng., Norwegian University of Science and Technology, N-7491 Trondheim, Norway
Publication date: 2012-01-01
Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 2012;48(1):29–38
This paper presents a theoretical analysis of the potential capacity enhancement that can be obtained by employing collective particle ejection (CPE) in automated sensor-based sorting circuits when sorting asymmetric feeds. During CPE sorting particles are examined and categorised individually, but physically separated as a set containing several particles. A CPE sorter must be placed in serial connection with a subsequent conventional individual particle ejection sorter (i.e. an IPE sorter) in order to achieve complete separation of individual particles, thus creating a CPE:IPE circuit. The relative capacity of this circuit per unit investment cost, compared with a conventional sorting circuit, depends on the relative concentration of the particle categories in the feed and decreases as the particle distribution becomes more symmetrical. As demonstrated in this paper, CPE can yield a significant capacity enhancement per unit investment cost when sorting sufficiently asymmetric feeds in situations where the capacity of conventional IPE sorting is limited by the actual physical separation of the particles and not their presentation and examination or the data analysis. The relative processing period ratio is the key parameter governing the feasibility of the CPE:IPE circuit and must be determined as a function of set size.