A Comparison of Two Circuit Applications for Implementation of Coarse Particle Flotation

Regino, Wong, Lopez, Adams, Hobert, Wasmund


The use of fluidized beds to enhance the flotation efficiency of coarse particles has been practised industrially using Eriez’ HydroFloat® separator in phosphate and potash for many years and has recently been successfully extended to sulfide minerals. This promising technology will recover “lost” coarse metal units, which can be 5-10% of the metal units contained in the mill feed.

In the “tailings scavenging” operating philosophy, the HydroFloat® will enhance production revenues with a small increase to capital and operating costs. This application allows the feed to the mill circuit to be incrementally increased, with an increase in the average particle size reporting to the flotation circuit, using the HydroFloat as a “back-stop.” Although highly profitable, this configuration does not enable other “green” benefits, such as reductions in energy, conventional flotation capacity, water consumption and the amount of final waste stored in conventional tailing facilities. These additional benefits are possible by considering a “coarse gangue rejection” operating philosophy.

Where is the best flowsheet location to add a coarse particle flotation (CPF) unit, and what will a CPF optimized flow-sheet look like? In this paper we will generically consider both of these questions. To illustrate, we will present test-work and standard mineral processing calculations to show the benefits of two different CPF installations taking advantage of the same ore body and mill product.


R. Regino1 -Plant Manager

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H. Wong2 - Senior Process Engineer

O.Lopez3 - Senior Sales Manager

K. Adams4 - Minerals Processing Manager

D. Hobert3 - Lab and Operations Director USA

E.B Wasmund3* – Global Managing Director

1 Capstone Mining Corp Suite 2100, 510 W. Georgia Street, Vancouver, BC, V6B 0M3.

 2 Fluor Canada Ltd Suite 700, 1075 W. Georgia St, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6E 4M7

 3 Eriez Flotation Division Canada 7168 Venture Street, Delta, BC, Canada, V4G 1H6

 4 Paterson and Cooke 221 Corporate Circle Golden, CO, USA

*Corresponding author


The authors would like to acknowledge Capstone Mining Corp. for providing access to process data from the Cozamin site and to Tony Lipiec of Fluor Canada for reviewing this paper and providing valuable insights.

The full paper can be accessed here