World Mining Congress
This paper presents results of an investigation into the connection between minerals liberation management and flotation, responding to lead-zinc concentrator “Erma reka”, in Bulgaria. Monitoring of a Zn flotation circuit was carried out. The causes for the high silica content in the final Zn concentrate were established. Quartz is present mainly as liberated particles (> 60–80 %) in the fine fractions of the products; therefore the selectivity of the flotation process is not effective. Two approaches were tested to reduce the quartz content of Zn concentrate: froth washing in Zn cleaner flotation and new gangue depressants in the Zn circuit. Experimental results from bench-scale flotation and industrial tests show that it is possibile to reduce the silica content of final Zn concentrate more than 2 times without the need for extensive regrinding. The depression of liberated quartz particles on all operations of Zn circuit using stage depressant addition is the right solution to produce high-grade Zn concentrate that meets the metallurgical requirements.
Keywords: Concentrates; Concentrate; Depressants; Cleaners; Silica; quartz; Additions; flotation; Roughers;
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