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LTM flotation Cell Level Measurement (2 replies)

9 months ago
Gruppen 9 months ago

I was thinking of submitting an update on our new LTM flotation electromagnetic level probe for flotation plants. I tried to do a search first to see if anything about this subject has been published. Watch this space though. I'm waiting for my client to give permission to publish.

David Kano
9 months ago
David Kano 9 months ago

Level measurement is a problem in float cells is a problem everywhere that I go. The plants start up with a standard, operations change it ad often it gets worse. The reference to a mouse trap, being that yes it seems simple, but in reality this is anything but! And when you get it right, everyone is all surprised because they thought that they had the solution already. It seems to be the simplest thing, but the mix of air, solids, solutions etc always plays havoc with reliability, so in reality it is also far from easy. When you come up with a mouse trap that works, then everyone will want one.

Dizzy Flores
9 months ago
Dizzy Flores 9 months ago

Not to steal any thunder from you but we are on the same page, one of my company’s has been distributing the LTM probes as part of our lines for 2-3 years and have been impressed with the probe’s value and capability. As a process metallurgist working both as a consultant and as a supplier of equipment and chemicals, I have become convinced of the value to operators. Many operations can improve their slurry level measurements or at least a device that does not require constant attention to ensure their operating capability.

LTM works on a conductive principle with advanced logic that vastly improves on earlier conductive probe technologies. There are no moving parts. Provides 10 level signals/second (near instantaneous) and is accurate with solids caking and even some scale build up as the probe can measure down to 1 micro Siemen conductivity levels. % solids do not have an effect as with float and pressure differential devices. Little maintenance except wash down basically on maintenance days (slurry agitation will clean probe) and descale every couple months or on a needed basis in scaling conditions. Because the probe was designed to measure the interface level between slurry and froth (foam in non mining applications), due to rapid, accurate and consistent readings we sell as many for sump applications as flotation.

There is more information available on my Zeroday website. To illustrate, one PGM mine installed a probe at the back end of a float circuit in a 6 foot sump feeding a bank of small cyclones making a 5-10 micron size split. The sump was constantly overflowing and sucking empty because the ultrasonic could not keep up which of course was impacting their cycloning operation. Beginning immediately due to the accurate LTM signal the sump level was consistently maintained at 62-74% level and 2-3 years later continues to provide excellent performance. Similar response and experience in an iron ore secondary mill sump (coarse particles) and they are switching to LTM probes for all of their 22 large sumps level monitoring to LTM from ultrasonic device. And we have sold probes for flotation cells and banks; in fact we usually have a loaner available for customers to try and in most cases customers purchase the probe rather than send back.

Not for every application. For instance we sold one to a Portuguese copper mine who were having % solids fluctuation issues that was causing accuracy issues with their existing pressure devices. About the time they installed the LTM probe, they had sorted out the % solids variation problems and so the Pd was working well, however, they confirmed the LTM accuracy. Also, if there are high levels of oils in the slurry which can happen at coal wash plants, etc., the LTM may be challenged because oil coating can interfere with conductance. But my experience is the LTM probes will work in a vast majority of cases.

Very good technology! A good option to consider. Was just in Chile visiting mines and there is a need and they could benefit from more consistent operation and a lot less operator attention. Will be in Peru and imagine process control will be a point of discussion even though the trip focus is on other matters. Same as everywhere else!

Sorry for the post length guess am excited about the operational potential! 

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