An Outotec e500 TankCell, with 500 m³ of actual flotation volume, was commissioned at the Kevitsa Cu-Ni-PGE concentrator in northern Finland during 2014. This flotation cell was implemented at the head of the existing copper circuit as the first Cu rougher flotation cell. This was the first flotation cell of this size to be run under production conditions by any supplier anywhere in the world.
The cell has been in continuous operation since start-up in October 2014 and has provided improvements in metallurgical performance at very low specific power consumption. On average, the cell has recovered 71 per cent of copper contained in the 0.37 per cent Cu flotation feed at a concentrate grade of 17 per cent Cu. The specific power consumption for the cell (excluding blower power) is typically around 0.4 kW/m³.
After start-up, the impeller speed and superficial gas velocity were varied and the impact on metallurgical performance measured. In this paper a review of the cell operation at Kevitsa is given. Furthermore, the impact of mixing and gas dispersion on metallurgical performance is presented.
Crosbie, R, Mattsson, T, Murphy, B and Maksimainen, T, 2016. Metallurgical Performance of Outotec’s e500 TankCell at the Kevitsa Cu-Ni-PGE Concentrator, in Proceedings 13th AusIMM Mill Operators’ Conference 2016, pp 127–134 (The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy: Melbourne).