Optimal Estimation of Mass Partition in a Centrifugal Separator by Metallurgical Balance

Siney Viana


Mineral processing plants make use of several types of equipments for size separation (size classification) to segregate ore particles by size. A particular type of such equipments is the centrifugal separator, which is intended to receive an input stream of ore slurry to be partitioned into two output streams: a coarse and a fines one. The coarse stream contains most of the coarse solids particles of the slurry, whereas the fines stream contains most of the fine particles. Although a centrifugal separator intends to perform a physical segregation of the solids particles by their size, a chemical segregation also results, in such a way that the chemical content of the coarse and the fines streams are normally different from the content of the input stream. When evaluating the performance of the separation process, three fundamental aspects should be analyzed: 1) the size distribution of the solids particles in each stream; 2) the amount of solids mass from the input stream that goes to the coarse stream and to the fines stream, that is, the mass partition; and 3) the chemical content of each stream. This work presents the application of the Least Squares method of optimization to calculate the mass partition, based on the measured chemical content of the streams, and on the metallurgical balance equations of the separation process.


least squares, mass balance, mass partition, metallurgical balance, size separation, optimization

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DOI: 10.3895/bjic.v4n1.4488


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ISSN: 2594-3553

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