The role of particle shape properties in determining flotation kinetics was investigated in this study. -150/+75 μm chalcopyrite was floated in a microflotation cell, and shape properties of the timed concentrates were quantified using a mineral liberation analyser - a mineralogical characterisation system based on automated scanning electron microscopy. It was found that, when floated in the absence of collector, particles with angular shape features reported to the concentrate faster than round particles. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectroscopy (ToF-SIMS) showed that angular particles also exhibited surface chemistry characteristics favourable for flotation. When particle floatabilities were high (i.e. when floated in the presence of potassium amyl xanthate), shape properties were not found to contribute significantly to the rates at which particles floated.
- Surface chemistry