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Although gold in nature exists in the form of simple substance, gold usually has the complex associated relation with other minerals in the raw ore. The conventional physical separation sometimes cannot be competent for grading the gold ore because of mineral the particle sizes, the associated relation and other reasons. It turns out to be the common beneficiation process of the gold dressing plants according to a hydrophobic difference in the mineral surface. Generally, there are many influential factors in the gold flotation process, like particle size, flotation reagents, pulp density, the flotation time, stirring intensity, inflating volume, pulp temperature, and etc. If we want to get a better flotation effect, we must keep the best value for each parameter.
1 Particle size
The milling fineness in the gold flotation process is determined by the gold dissemination size. Oversize and undersize will both affect the final flotation effect. Oversize on the one hand may not achieve the monomer separation and make the concentrate have a low grade. The big particle size of the mineral goes against floating by a bubble and this part of gold will get lost with the underflow. Meanwhile, the underside also has a disadvantage. If the mineral fineness is oversized, it will inevitably lead to the increase of ion in the pulp. The ion and target miners would have competitive adsorption in the bubble surface, which will affect the flotation efficiency. The fine grain mineral has a bigger specific area and interfaces energy. It has a strong absorption capacity of the medicament. Therefore, the undersized minerals will result in an increase of medicament consumption in the gold flotation process.
2 Reagents system
Reagents system in the gold flotation refers to types, dosage, adding way and the adding order of reagents. Flotation process is to increase the hydrophobic difference of the target mineral and the gangue mineral by the preferential adsorption between the medicament and the target mineral. Minerals with great hydrophobicity absorb in the surface of a bubble and rise to emerge with the bubble. Reagents is the key to change the hydrophobicity, so the medicament is especially important to the flotation.
3 Pulp density
Pulp density refers to the solid content of the pulp. Usually, it refers to the mass (or volume) ratio of solid (minerals) and liquid (water) in the pulp. It is expressed by the liquid-solid ratio or solid mass fraction. The pulp density affects the gold recovery rate, the concentrate quality, and the medicament dosage.
4 Flotation time, stirring intensity, inflating volume and pulp temperature
Those factors during the flotation process have also affected the final concentrate quality. Different gold ores have different parameters about those factors, so it must be confirmed by the processing test.
Except the factors mentioned above, there are still many others that have affected the gold flotation process, like the PH of the flotation water, the hardness and the oxygen content of the air in the plants. Before the processing design, it must conduct the research of processing test based on the accurate fundamental data.