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4 Steps for Wolframite Ore Beneficiation

2023-10-18 XinHai Views (282)

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Tungsten is widely used in cemented carbide, steel and special alloys, lighting industry, chemical industry, petrochemical industry, and high-tech fields. As the tungsten market demand becomes stronger, the recovery rate of tungsten ore needs to be increased to meet market demand. Depending on the mineral, different mineral processing methods are used. In order to improve the recovery rate, it is necessary to choose the appropriate mineral processing method. At present, the tungsten minerals with economic value for mining mainly include wolframite and scheelite. This article mainly introduces you to the mineral processing process of wolframite ore.

Wolframite ore has the characteristics of low raw ore grade, complex mineral composition, and difficulty in sorting. The main mineral processing process of wolframite ore based on wolframite ore consists of four parts: (1) crushing and discarding waste rock in advance to obtain qualified ore (2) Gravity separation and discarded tailings to obtain coarse concentrate (3) Selective separation and comprehensive recovery of coarse concentrate to obtain concentrate (4) Fine mud treatment.


(rod mill)

01Wolframite ore waste disposal process

The pre-enrichment process can improve the quality of raw ore and discard waste rock that is much lower than the grade of gravity separation tailings. Since waste rock is a difficult-to-grind material, discarding it in advance can save water, electricity and raw material consumption, and reduce mineral processing costs to a certain extent. Wolframite ore beneficiation plants often use manual hand selection, photoelectric beneficiation, heavy media beneficiation and other methods to pre-enrich wolframite ore. In actual production, the quality of the pre-enrichment effect and the waste rock selection rate will affect the efficiency of the gravity separation operation, and will also affect the production efficiency of the mineral processing plant. Therefore, the pre-enrichment process has an important impact on improving the technical and economic indicators of the dressing plant.


(Shaking table)

02Wolframite ore gravity separation process and equipment

Due to the high density of wolframite, gravity separation can be used to process it. The gravity selection method has the advantages of low cost and environmental protection. The principle process of tungsten ore gravity separation is generally: one-stage or two-stage grinding, three-stage jig separation, four-stage or five-stage shaking table separation, and centralized processing of fine mud to obtain coarse concentrate. The coarse and medium-sized jig tailings enter the rod mill for re-grinding, and then enter the vibrating screen for screening, forming a closed loop. The dressing plant generally uses a two-stage shaking table for separation, and the coarse and medium-grained ore obtained is returned to the circulation loop, and the slime is processed separately.

The jig is one of the commonly used equipment in tungsten mining plants. Jigging operation is the main operation for gravity separation and recovery of tungsten and associated heavy minerals. Black tungsten ore concentrators generally choose three-stage jigging operations to screen qualified ores into three levels: coarse, medium and fine for jigging operations.

The shaking table is one of the most commonly used gravity separation equipment for fine-grained ores. It can be used to process tungsten, tin, tantalum niobium, titanium, zirconium and other ores. The selected particle size is generally between 0.037-2mm. The shaking table has the advantages of high enrichment ratio and high-grade concentrate can be obtained in one separation. The tailings from the jigging operation of the wolframite ore plant are generally re-separated using a shaking table.


(Jig machine)

03Wolframite ore beneficiation process

The coarse concentrate obtained during the gravity separation stage of wolframite contains minerals such as cassiterite, molybdenite, and pyrite. If the tungsten concentrate contains more impurities, the performance of tungsten steel and tungsten metal will be greatly affected. Therefore, these associated minerals are harmful impurities to the concentrate, but some metals are also useful minerals. Therefore, the crude concentrate needs to be carefully selected to remove impurities as much as possible and separate the useful minerals into individual products. The beneficiation operation plays an important role in improving the quality of the concentrate and the comprehensive utilization of useful components.

Since there are many types of symbiotic minerals in the coarse concentrate, the grade is relatively low, and the symbiotic relationship with tungsten minerals is relatively close, it is necessary to adopt a combined process of gravity separation, flotation, magnetic separation, electric separation and other mineral processing methods. Due to the different ore properties of coarse concentrates, the selection processes that need to be adopted are also different and need to be adjusted according to the actual situation.


(Magnetic separation equipment)

04Wolframite ore fine mud treatment

Due to its brittleness and high density, tungsten ore will stay in the grinding equipment longer than other gangue minerals, so it is prone to over-crushing. The primary sludge and secondary sludge produced during the mineral processing process contain many valuable elements, so it is necessary to comprehensively recover the useful components. Since the composition of fine mud is relatively complex, combined beneficiation processes are often used, such as: desulfurization-centrifuge-tungsten flotation-magnetic separation, magnetic separation-gravity separation-flotation, centrifuge-flotation, etc.

The above is a brief introduction to the four-step mineral processing process of wolframite ore. The specific process design and equipment configuration should be designed according to the production requirements of the mineral processing plant and the characteristics of the ore. Xinhai Mining recommends conducting mineral processing test to determine the physical and chemical properties, mineral composition, mineral processing characteristics, etc. of the ore, and then formulate a reasonable mineral processing technology and select appropriate mineral processing equipment to avoid unnecessary economic losses.

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