Unearthed Vancouver 201729 Sep - 01 Oct
From idea to prototype in one weekend
This competition has finished.
Improve flotation circuit performance through froth characteristics
Froth cameras have become a common technology in flotation circuits to collect key performance data in the minerals processing industry. The information they collect can be used to optimize circuit performance and metal recovery through measurement of variables such as bubble size, froth depth and froth velocity. Currently, very few of the actual parameters are used to make decisions while operating the circuit. The challenge is to determine what the optimum flotation conditions would be based on all the data measurements available.
Flotation circuit performance is currently evaluated by measuring on-stream assays as well as operator observations of froth characteristics. Operator observations are subjective in nature (Is the froth slow? Dry? Dark?) and it takes a very experienced operator to make accurate observations. Spot checks by operators are only conducted periodically during a shift. The installed froth cameras allow for continuous monitoring of the cells and clear objective measurements of color, texture, collapse rate and other variables. Optimization of the flotation circuit could lead to USD 4.6 million revenue annually for every 0.5% increase in recovery at $1.10/lb. of zinc.
Potential Areas to consider:
- Can we optimize the current process through the utilization of some or all additional froth characteristics?
- Are there other solutions such as improved visualization for operators?
Full challenge description available for download here.