2013 – COM 2013, Montreal, Canada
This paper conducts a review of the current state of the technology and flotation
equipment including equipment suppliers and sites significant technical changes. Flotation
cells have increased in size over the last thirty years and there have been significant changes
in cell layout, technology and design. The key factors for sizing and equipment selection is
the ore character based on flotation testwork and plant experience. The retention time
required at each stage is also a key factor discussed. The change from square Hough trough
cells to cylindrical tank cells up to 600 m
in size has been game changing. The recovery of a
flotation cell relates directly to the amount of air added to the cell. Optimising reagent
chemical use has provided great insights into flotation performance.
Flash flotation cells, column cells, Jameson cells, unit cells, improved metallurgical
performance, internal launders, etc. in stream analysis are all developments worthy of
mention. Advances in modelling, simulation and control optimisation are bringing benefits to
the industry. Examples of large flotation cell installations and related issues are also outlined.