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Graphic element Research > Growth > Research projects > Previous projects > Industrial Processes > Improvement and extension of the use of flotation columns
Graphic element Improvement and extension of the use of flotation columns
     
 
An improved flotation system using double counter-current and a new bubble generator saves energy and chemicals and produces purer primary and secondary concentrates.
 

Flotation is a process for mechanically separating solid particles in water suspension cells, based on their physico-chemical surface properties. It is widely used in the extraction of metals from their ores, but also for different industrial purposes.

The objective of this project was the development of an improved flotation system, especially aimed at the treatment of sulphide ore in Southern Europe. A new column flotation system uses double counter-current and a new bubble generator, allowing much more efficient separation in terms of energy and chemical savings, purity of concentrates and recovery of secondary products.

Columns are now operating successfully in different European countries, including Spain and Sweden, bringing both economic benefits to companies and environmental benefits. Project partners note that while the new system was specifically designed for mineral separation applications, it could also be adapted to ionic flotation. One SME partner is now expanding its activities in flotation columns sales and services outside of Europe.

Cordis RCN: 6621
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