2014 IMPC 2014 • Process Optimization Using Real-Time Measurement
Process optimization at Rio Tinto Kennecott using real-time measurement of coarse material in individual hydrocyclone overflow streams
The presence of unwanted coarse material in flotation feed streams negatively impacts both recovery and throughput of concentrator plants. The detection of this coarse material is a long-standing problem in mineral processing that has been poorly addressed by existing instrumentation systems.
This problem has been overcome by the development of two new systems that detect in real-time the presence of coarse material in the overflow stream of individual hydrocyclones. They both use sensors mounted to the overflow pipe of the hydrocyclone and provide a robust and maintenance-free system measurement that enables corrective actions through operator intervention or automatic control strategies.
One system is non-invasive and detects very coarse material 6mm or greater in size. The other system uses a wetted sensor and detects coarse material down to a lower size limit of approximately 100 um. Both systems have been commercially deployed. The systems will be described in detail. Validation data and typical plant data will be shown.