Separation of KCl values from Canadian sylvinite and carnallite potash ores by selective flocculation

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 93, No. 1040, 2000
C. Poole and S.A. Beeson, Department of Mining and Mineral Engineering, University of Leeds, Leeds, United Kingdom

This paper reports on the development of selective
flocculation processes for the direct recovery of KCl values from low-grade
Canadian sylvinite and carnallite potash ores. Two reagent suites, consisting of
either a non-selective cationic or selective non-ionic flocculant, together with
the same selective anionic dispersant, were evaluated. Initial data from
component mineral behaviour investigations, reagent adsorption studies and
selective flocculation tests on a synthetic potash ore were used in the
successful development of processes capable of recovering KCl values without the
necessity for desliming to remove water-insolubles. Enhanced multi-stage
treatment (involving redispersion and reflocculation) and subsequent floc
recovery techniques (including sedimentation, hydrocyclones and froth flotation)
were examined, and in all cases the influence of process parameters such as
reagent dosages, conditioning times, solids concentration, particle size and
other physical design criteria were investigated. The data reported clearly
demonstrate the scale-up potential of these processes and

Keywords: Mineral processing, Flocculation processes, Selective flocculation processes, Sylvinite, Carnallite potash, Potash.
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