Fuel, Vol.89, No.9, 2433-2437, 2010
An enhanced-gravity method to recover ultra-fine coal from tailings: Falcon concentrator
The Falcon concentrator is an enhanced-gravity separator used for the concentration of fine and ultra-fine minerals. This study was conducted to evaluate the effects of different process variables on the performance of the Falcon SB-40 concentrator for beneficiation of tailings to recover ultra-fine coal. Various operating and design conditions such as bowl speed (G force), water pressure, pulp solid ratio and pulp feed rate were investigated. A hydrocyclone was used for pre-enrichment with the Falcon concentrator. Operation parameters of the hydrocyclone, namely feed solids, inlet pressure, vortex finder and apex diameters were investigated. In order to produce fine coal concentrates, regression equations were derived by applying the least squares method using Minitab 15 software. Response functions were produced for the ash content and the recovery of the clean coal concentrates for the performance of the hydrocyclone and Falcon concentrator under different operating conditions. Predicted values were found with the experimental values giving R(2) values of between 0.73 and 0.58 for ash content and between 0.65 and 0.39 for recovery of the clean coal. It was shown that under optimized conditions the Falcon concentrator can produce a clean coal with an ash value of 36% from a feed coal of about 66% ash. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.