2010 Automining • Sonar Flow Measurement

Sonar Flow Measurement: First Five Years of Experience in the Minerals Processing Industry and Future Directions

Robert Maron, Christian O’Keefe, Paul Rothman
Abstract / Introduction: 

Sonar array-based flow measurement technology was introduced into the mineral processing industry five years ago, and has since demonstrated significant usefulness and value in many difficult and critical flow monitoring applications. This robust non-contact technology has become the standard for many companies in certain applications.

Presented here is a summary of application experience, lessons learned, and best practices from installations world wide. Highlighted applications include: cyclone feed flow measurement, measuring aerated flows for mass balance correction, stratification and sanding detection in horizontal slurry lines, slurry pipeline flow monitoring.

It will be shown how the basic volumetric flow rate, combined with the unique additional measurement of entrained air volume and the proper positioning of multiple meters can enable novel solutions to monitoring and control problems that are not possible with other flow technologies.

Recent product development work will be presented showing how the same fundamental sensor technology can be used to obtain robust, high quality acoustic signals which can be used to monitor and control key flow related process equipment in the beneficiation process, and improve process performance. Results of in-plant tests will be presented.

Reference number: 
Asset type: 
Technical Paper