Nickel is widely used in the metal industry due to its excellent properties. Nickel ore is the main source. In order to obtain high-grade nickel concentrate raw materials, the beneficiation process of nickel ore is particularly important. Due to the existence of nickel ores with different types in nature, their beneficiation processes are also different. Generally, nickel ore can be divided into copper-nickel sulfide ore and nickel oxide ore. The following will mainly introduce the beneficiation process of copper-nickel ore after pretreatment. Based on the properties of copper-nickel ore, the commonly used beneficiation method is flotation. Magnetic separation and gravity separation are usually used as auxiliary beneficiation methods for copper-nickel ore. During the copper-nickel flotation process, the commonly used agents are collectors and foaming agents. The copper-nickel flotation processes can be divided into four types: preferential flotation, mixed flotation, mixed-preferred flotation and mixed-preferred flotation + tailings recovery. The following is the specific introduction of these four copper-nickel flotation processes.
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When analyzing copper-nickel ore, if the copper content in the ore is much higher than that of nickel, the direct or partial preferential flotation process can be used. After crushing, screening, grinding and classification, the raw ore enters the flotation machine for preferential flotation. After flotation, copper concentrate can be obtained. In order to obtain nickel ore concentrate, it is necessary to carry out second-stage flotation on the tailings of one-stage flotation. Nickel concentrate can be obtained after the second-stage flotation. The advantage of preferential flotation process is that a copper concentrate with lower nickel content can be obtained.
When the copper content in the copper-nickel ore is lower than the nickel, mixed flotation can be used. The specific process is as follows: the pre-treated ore is pumped into the flotation machine by the slurry pump for flotation, and the copper-nickel mixed concentrate is obtained. In order to obtain copper concentrate and nickel concentrate respectively, copper-nickel separation technology, namely mixed concentrate separation process and high-nickel matte separation process, should be adopted. The high-nickel matte separation process is generally used to treat copper-nickel ore with fine ore particle size and very close inlaid distribution. That is, the mixed concentrate can be smelted into high nickel matte, and then the flotation operation of high nickel matte can be carried out to obtain copper concentrate and nickel concentrate. The iron content and cooling rate in high matte will affect the separation effect. When smelting high nickel matte, it is necessary to ensure that the iron content is controlled at 2%-4%. When the high nickel matte is slowly reduced from 800 ℃ to 200 ℃, the separation effect of copper and nickel can be effectively improved.
If the ore particle size is relatively coarse, and the inlaid relationship between copper and nickel is not very close, the mixed concentrate separation method can be used. Specifically, the raw ore enters the flotation machine to separate the copper-nickel mixed concentrate. The copper-nickel mixed concentrate enters the next stage of flotation process, and after taking into account specific chemicals, copper concentrate and nickel concentrate can be obtained. The lime-cyanide method, the lime-sodium sulfide method and the bisulfite method are often used for the separation of mixed concentrates of copper-nickel ores. Sometimes, the purpose of improving the separation effect of copper-nickel concentrate can also be achieved by increasing the slurry temperature.
There are many types of nickel minerals contained in cupro-nickel ore, such as pyrite, needle pyrite and so on. The floatability of these nickel ores also varies. When the floatability of different nickel minerals in the ore is quite different, after copper-nickel mixed flotation, in addition to the flotation of the concentrate part, it is also necessary to recover the mixed flotation tailings. The tailings recovery mainly adopts the flotation method. After flotation, the nickel-containing minerals with poor floatability can be separated out. Such a recovery process can improve concentrate recovery and material utilization.
The above are four copper-nickel flotation processes. It can be seen from the above that different beneficiation processes will be used for copper-nickel ores with different properties and characteristics. Therefore, it is very necessary to test the ore selectivity before designing the ore beneficiation process. Xinhai can provide you with reliable ore beneficiation tests, and design efficient copper-nickel beneficiation processes and customized beneficiation equipment according to your beneficiation plant and budget. At the same time, we have professional equipment installation and commissioning technicians and perfect after-sales service, you can choose Xinhai with confidence.