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Zinc Beneficiation Simulator

Zinc Beneficiation Simulator

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Published by Neil Robinson

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Published by: Neil Robinson on Apr 07, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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 CHE445ZC
HEMICAL
E
NGINEERING
P
ROJECT
 
Development of a spreadsheet-based simulator for a zinc beneficiation practical 
Mineral Processing Research Unit at the University of  Cape Town 
P
REPARED
B
 Y 
:
M
ICHAEL
F
LETCHER 
(FLTMIC007)N
EIL
OBINSON
(RBNNEI002)
P
REPARED
F
OR 
:
D
.
 
D.A.
 
D
EGLON
 M
.
 
P.
 
L
EKOMA
 13 November, 2002
© Copyright 2002
 
Development of a Spreadsheet Based Zinc Simulator Synopsis
 
i
Synopsis
 The hydrometallurgical zinc beneficiation process is studied by third year chemicalengineering students at the Western Cape Mineral Processing Facility in Stellenbosch. Currently,students learn by first researching the zinc beneficiation process and giving a presentation todemonstrate theoretical knowledge gained. They then perform experiments which demonstratethe principles behind the industrial process. It is felt that the theoretical and practical knowledgegained from these tasks is not adequately reconciled. To combat this problem the process (from milling through to electrowinning) has beensuccessfully modelled using the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet add-on LIMN.It is proposed that the simulator should be used as an educational tool for the third yearstudents. It is hoped that exposure to the simulator will help students to bridge the gap betweentheir theoretical and practical knowledge. The simulator successfully shows trends in the process with changes of variables, but doesnot, and is not intended to predict accurate process values. The major assumption made for the entire process was that the ore fed to the systemconsisted of pure ZnS. i.e. no impurities. The models chosen for each unit operation are:
Milling
: Standard population balance model, incorporating JKMRC Massive Sulphideore appearance function. Cyclone cut based on reduced recovery curve
Flotation
: 1
st
order kinetics model, with rate constant estimated using the Jamesonequation
Roasting
: Mass transfer limited shrinking core model in a fluidised bed
Leaching
: Thermodynamic equilibrium model
Electrowinning
: CSTR operating in a semi-batch environmentSeveral student learning assignments are proposed. They are: A Fresh Feed Exercise An Optimisation ExerciseExpected outcomes from the learning assignments are:Understanding of knock-on effects in a system Appreciation of the sensitivity of unit operations An appreciation of the impact of economic and production factors on optimisation
 
Development of a Spreadsheet Based Zinc Simulator Table of Contents
 
ii
Table of Contents
 Synopsis----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------i 
 
Table of Contents----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ii 
 
 List of Figures ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ iv
 
 List of Tables-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- iv
 
 Nomenclature-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- v
 
1
 
 Introduction----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1
 
1.1
 
Background--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------2
 
1.2
 
Practical Procedure ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------2
 
1.3
 
LIMN – The Flowsheet Processor-----------------------------------------------------------------3
 
1.4
 
Aims and Objectives ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------4
 
2
 
 Review of the Hydrometallurgical Route------------------------------------------------------5
 
2.1
 
Communition and Flotation------------------------------------------------------------------------6
 
2.2
 
RLE (Roasting, Leaching, Electrowinning) Process Review --------------------------------6
 
2.2.1
 
Roasting of Zinc Bearing Ore-------------------------------------------------------------------------------6
 
2.2.2
 
Leaching-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------7
 
2.2.3
 
Electrolysis----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------8
 
3
 
 Review of Mathematical Models----------------------------------------------------------------9
 
3.1
 
Modelling of the Ball Mill------------------------------------------------------------------------- 10
 
3.1.1
 
Population Balance Model--------------------------------------------------------------------------------10
 
3.1.2
 
Modelling the rate of breakage----------------------------------------------------------------------------11
 
3.1.3
 
A simplified Ball Mill Model-----------------------------------------------------------------------------12
 
3.2
 
Hydrocyclone Modelling-------------------------------------------------------------------------- 12
 
3.3
 
Flotation circuit Modelling ----------------------------------------------------------------------- 15
 
3.3.1
 
First order Flotation Kinetics------------------------------------------------------------------------------15
 
3.3.2
 
Estimation of the First order rate Constant--------------------------------------------------------------15
 
3.3.3
 
Second order Flotation Kinetics--------------------------------------------------------------------------16
 
3.4
 
Roasting Models – Kinetic and Thermodynamic -------------------------------------------- 16
 
3.4.1
 
Roasting Thermodynamics--------------------------------------------------------------------------------16
 
3.4.2
 
Bubbling Bed Model---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------17
 
3.4.3
 
Shrinking Core Model-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------18
 
3.5
 
Zinc Leaching Models ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- 18
 
3.5.1
 
Thermodynamics of Leaching----------------------------------------------------------------------------18
 
3.5.2
 
Leaching Kinetics – Mass-Transfer Limited Model---------------------------------------------------19
 
3.5.3
 
Thermodynamic Equilibrium Model---------------------------------------------------------------------20
 
3.6
 
Electrowinning Models---------------------------------------------------------------------------- 20
 
3.6.1
 
Single pass reactors-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------20
 
3.6.2
 
Semi-batch reactors-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------21
 
 
 Models Used and Major Assumptions Made-------------------------------------------------22
 
4.1
 
The Simulator Appearance----------------------------------------------------------------------- 23
 
4.2
 
Ball Mill Model-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 23
 

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