The optimisation of fine gold recovery for Telfer pyrite scavenger concentrate and Cadia scavenger cyclone overflow concentrate using the Falcon Concentrator

McAleese, Ashley (2002). The optimisation of fine gold recovery for Telfer pyrite scavenger concentrate and Cadia scavenger cyclone overflow concentrate using the Falcon Concentrator Honours Thesis, School of Engineering, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author McAleese, Ashley
Thesis Title The optimisation of fine gold recovery for Telfer pyrite scavenger concentrate and Cadia scavenger cyclone overflow concentrate using the Falcon Concentrator
School, Centre or Institute School of Engineering
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2002-01-01
Thesis type Honours Thesis
Supervisor Robert Dunne
Peter Holtham
Geoff Lyman
Language eng
Subjects 091405 Mining Engineering
Formatted abstract
Current gold recovery at Cadia Hill Gold Mine is limited to 75% with respect to plant feed. To increase plant recovery Newcrest Mining Ltd has decided to investigate methods to recover gold from pyrite scavenger concentrates and scavenger concentrate cyclone overflow streams. In pilot plant studies thus far they have been able to recover over 40% of the gold from the tailings stream in these new streams. These concentrates must then be concentrated further by some means. Consequently the major objective of this thesis is to optimise the Falcon Concentrator to recover the gold from these particular types of concentrates.

Literature review and personal communication with supervisors has clarified the significant parameters and their effect on the performance of the Falcon Concentrator. This information has allowed the simplification of the performance analysis into the hypothesis below:

Fine gold recovery by the Falcon Concentrator from pyrite and cyclone overflow scavenger concentrates can be increased through parameter optimisation of fluidisation rate and super bowl speed.

To validate this hypothesis two separate test regimes were developed. A Telfer pyrite scavenger concentrate was used because large amounts of Cadia pyrite scavenger concentrate were not available. The Telfer feed was tested with a 9-test experimental design developed to analyse super bowl speed and fluidisation rate variables. The second testing regime on Cadia scavenger concentrate cyclone overflow was a 4-test experimental design based on the variation of bowl speed to investigate associated affects. The test regimes were preceded by size reduction to liberate the gold from the pyrite and preliminary tests that helped develop experimental accuracy.

The Telfer pyrite scavenger concentrate tests indicated that the pyrite component of the feed is recovered on mass and obliterates any effect of bowl speed in the medium to high operating range. The effect of increasing fluidisation water rate is to increase gold grade with little recovery loss by reducing mass recovery (predominantly pyrite) to the concentrate. Uncertainty analysis of experimental technique indicated a significant error that may have affected results. Cadia scavenger concentrate cyclone overflow testing demonstrates that increasing bowl speed increases gold recovery with some drop in grade.

The test work demonstrates that the maximum fluidising rate of a Falcon Concentrator should be utilised to treat pyrite scavenger concentrates. To clarify this recommendation further the 8LPM and 12LPM fluidisation water rate tests for the 300G bowl speed should be cyclosized and analysed for gold, copper and sulphur recovery. Another two test regimes should be developed to check the reproducibility of Telfer test results and extend knowledge by analysing the effect of pyrite dilution on bowl speed effects. In addition a 100G bowl speed test on the pyrite concentrate should be completed for further investigation. Lastly the Cadia pyrite scavenger concentrate should be tested at maximum fluidisation water rate and varied bowl speed to optimise gold grade and recovery.

The Falcon Concentrator rig and other thesis-associated activities were fully assessed for risk using the Failure Mode Effect Analysis and the Workplace Risk Assessment and control formulae.

Keyword Fine Gold Recovery

Document type: Thesis
Collection: UQ Theses (non-RHD) - UQ staff and students only
 
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Created: Sat, 29 Nov 2014, 02:53:01 EST by Asma Asrar Qureshi on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service