The impact of entrained air and enhanced flow measurements at Eland Platinum concentrator
Volumetric flow and mass flow are two of the critical process parameters needed to understand and control flotation processes, with others being levels, densities, and metal analyses. Both volumetric flow and density measurements can be adversely influenced by entrained air, which will result in artificially high flow readings and artificially low mass flow calculations. Array-based instrumentation has been used successfully to accurately measure both volumetric flow of aerated slurry and the quantity of air entrained within the slurry. The latter measurement has been used to correct density measurements, thus providing an accurate mass flow calculation. A case study involving the use of this technology to measure both flow rates and air entrainment levels at Eland Platinum processing facility (concentrator) will be covered in detail. In addition, with certain traditional flow meters such as electromagnetic meters, erroneous volumetric flow rates can be recorded in the presence of paramagnetic or ferromagnetic material. The use of this array technology to avoid spikes in measurements due to steel fragments passing through the pipe will also be discussed.