Reduction of the unpredictability and improvement of mining operations performance may need some efforts by means of upgrading the process and mechanical knowledge of operators in plants regarding the function procedure details of the equipment and their respond accordingly to the production. The development of digitalization will cause more awareness and in-time detection of faults, which makes the mining operation and equipment more efficient and much more optimized.
As the core of a mineral processing plant, flotation cells circuit is the most important section which needs to be digitized.
Fluctuations in froth size and stability, damages in motor and mechanism, tensions in V-belt and bearings failure are the main issues that would cause lots of problems in the process if not being detected and solved as soon as possible.
Online Evaluation and analyze of the froth may be the main step of digitalization of a flotation cell that can be done by using optical sensors. Checking the air blowing system, reagent system and valves functionality with implementing a compatible algorithm will lead to perfect optimization of the flotation system.
The benefit is this sensor let operators to control and optimize flotation cells also the operation is completely automatic. Another advantage is to include digital network cameras. In addition, it has just one cable that can be used for lights and imager. Existing of failure detection causes no overflow at the front end. To utilize complete the real-time froth analyses, this system provided by ACT.
Also in motor and mechanism, V-belt dive and bearings, monitoring the noise changes in the each section will be a reliable indicator to find out about the possible damages which may be caused by tensions and failures, using a noise sensor.
The cut outs of the motor and cell’s power system which may be caused by feed overload, impeller damages and etc. also can be diagnosed using pressure sensors or electrical sensors.
Furthermore, implementation of image analyzers for better size detection of the inlet feed of a flotation cell will result in reduction of the probability of entering of over-size feed to the cell.
The picture below is an initial fault detection and problem solving solution algorithm that we use for better optimization of our flotation system.