Optimisation of conditions for Mufulira reclaimed ore
Musonda, Chibwe Amos
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The project was conducted at Mufulira Concentrator of Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines Limited (ZCCM). This concentrator treats sulphide ores whose copper mineralogy is mainly, bornite, chalcocite and chalcopyrite. Presently this concentrator is treating a mixture of fresh and reclaimed ores. Approximately about 20 OOOt per day of ore are currently treated at which about 7% was reclaimed ore as from November 1992. With this practice, it was observed that much of copper was lost to the tailings. Reclaimed ore is the ore that was originally considered to be treated because it was a low grade material. This material was therefore, left underground in stopes in preference for high grade material. The project was, therefore, aimed at optimising the flotation conditions for reclaimed ore in comparison to the existing conditions for fresh ore. It was further aimed at finding the best blending proportions of fresh and reclaimed ores. A grind of 56% - 75/xm, a pH range of 10-11 and a collector dosage rate of 20g/t/10g/t (SIPX/PAX) were found to be optimum. The blending proportion of 20% reclaimed ore and 80%- fresh ore was found to be optimum.
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