Mechanism study of the impact of water-borne bacteria on flotation

Liu, Wenying, Moran, C. J. and Vink, Sue (2013) Mechanism study of the impact of water-borne bacteria on flotation. International Journal of Mineral Processing, 123 39-45. doi:10.1016/j.minpro.2013.04.015

Author Liu, Wenying
Moran, C. J.
Vink, Sue
Title Mechanism study of the impact of water-borne bacteria on flotation
Journal name International Journal of Mineral Processing   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0301-7516
Publication date 2013-09
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.minpro.2013.04.015
Volume 123
Start page 39
End page 45
Total pages 7
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publisher Elsevier BV
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Bacteria-containing water is being increasingly accessed by the minerals industry as an alternative water source to improve water efficiency. Water-borne bacteria have been shown to negatively affect the efficiency of froth flotation when using a representative system consisting of E. coli as the model bacterium and chalcopyrite as the model mineral. It is essential to understand the underlying mechanisms that could explain the observed effect, to provide guidance on the subsequent solutions to deal with it. This study conducted a systematic investigation into the mechanism by which bacteria affect flotation efficiency using fluorescence microscopy, bubble attachment time measurements, and froth phase characteristics. E. coli bacterial cells in solution were found to attach to chalcopyrite surfaces. In turn, the surface hydrophobicity of chalcopyrite particles decreased as the number of the attached bacterial cells increased. Reduction in surface hydrophobicity resulted in less mineral particles attaching to bubbles, leading to decreased froth stability, bubble coalescence rate and froth velocity. Slurry pH and Eh were also affected by the presence of the bacterial cells. These changes were correlated with reductions in flotation recoveries. These experimental results contribute to an understanding of how biotic water constituents impact the operation of flotation plants that choose to use alternative water sources, and provide knowledge towards possible solutions to the negative effect of water-borne bacteria
Keyword Bacterial attachment
Froth stability
Froth velocity
Bubble Coalescence
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Centre for Water in the Minerals Industry
Official 2014 Collection
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 2 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Sun, 06 Oct 2013, 00:14:31 EST by System User on behalf of Centre for Water in the Minerals Industry