Relationship between surface froth features and process conditions in the batch flotation of a sulphide ore
Flotation processes occurring in the bulk and froth phases have a characteristic influence on the structural features and dynamics of the flotation froth. In principle the froth features can therefore be used as a useful indicator of the performance of the flotation system. In this study the surface froth features and dynamics are represented by three features extracted from the digitized images of the froths, viz. a statistical feature which is a rough indication of the average bubble size of the froth, a measure of the froth stability, as well as the average grey level of the froth, which is an indication of mineral loading. The effect of high intensity conditioning on the batch flotation of a sulphide ore from the Merensky reef in South Africa was investigated, and the significantly beneficial effect of high intensity conditioning on the performance of the flotation was clearly reflected in the smaller bubble size distributions and greater stability of the flotation froths. © 1997 Elsevier Science Ltd.