2007 Mapla • Passive Sonar Technology in Minerals Processing
Application of Passive Sonar Technology to Minerals Processing Applications
In this presentation, the SONARtrac technology platform will be described. CiDRA's proprietary clamp-on, passive sonar array-based flow meter technology performs two independent measurements – flow rate and speed of sound. Firstly, the meter provides the volumetric flow rate of the mixture by measuring the speed at which naturally occurring turbulent structures convect with the flow past an axial array of sensors. Secondly, the meter uses similar sonar-based processing techniques and naturally occurring sound in the process fluid to measure the speed of sound which is used to determine fluid characteristics and entrained air levels. The result is a unique ability to measure the flow rate and entrained air level of most fluids – clean liquids, high solids content slurries, and liquids and slurries with entrained air.
Also to be presented is the application of the sonar-based technology platform in a variety of hydrotransport and minerals beneficiation applications. In particular, difficult slurry flow measurement and control in the areas of comminution and flotation such as mill discharge, hydrocyclone feed/overflow, final concentrate, thickener discharge, pipeline management, and tailings will be discussed. In addition new real time maintenance free process measurement capability will be presented in the areas of entrained air in slurry, collection zone gas holdup, batch tracking in final concentrate pipelines, and monitoring of acoustic events and conditions. The operational advantages and value of these measurements will be discussed.