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Three factors affect the iron ore flotation process

235 30.Aug.2022 KZ Editor

The main flotation processes of iron ore include positive anion flotation and reverse cation flotation. In this article, we will mainly discuss the factors that affect iron ore flotation.

The floatability of different iron ores is quite different. For example, the floatability of magnetite is much worse than that of hematite. For different types of iron ores, the flotation reagents used are also different. Flotation has an impact, so this paper chooses three aspects as the focus of analysis: iron ore species, flotation environment, and flotation reagents.

1. Types of iron ore

There are many types of iron ore and are complex. Currently, the industrial iron ore raw ore that can be used includes: maghemite, ilmenite, etc. Due to the large differences in the floatability of these iron ores, the choice of flotation type is affected.

Among the iron ore, the iron ores with better floatability are hematite, pseudo-hematite, limonite and siderite. Coarse particle size hematite is usually processed by reverse flotation, while finer particle size hematite can be floated by positive flotation.


False hematite is slightly less floatable than hematite, but both forward and reverse flotation processes can be used to treat false hematite. The floatability of siderite and pseudo-hematite is similar, and it is also a mineral that can be applied to both positive and negative flotation.

For magnetite with poor floatability, reverse flotation is generally used to flotate gangue minerals in iron concentrates, which can greatly reduce the impurity content in the concentrates.

Water-containing iron oxide minerals are more troublesome, because they are hydrophilic, soft, and easy to mud.

2. Flotation environment

The flotation environment here mainly refers to the change of pH value. Different iron ores have different requirements for PH value, and the difference in PH will also affect the recovery rate.


Hematite and pseudo-hematite have very strict PH value requirements, too high or too low will make the recovery rate fluctuate. The pH range is between 7 and 8. The choice of flotation process for siderite will change in different acid and alkali environments. In strong alkaline environment, siderite can choose cationic collectors for flotation. In neutral medium, anion can be used. collectors to collect.

3. The influence of the choice of iron ore flotation reagents

In terms of reagents, the commonly used flotation reagents for iron ore include cationic collectors, anionic collectors, inhibitors, etc. Among them, cationic collectors are commonly used ether amine collectors to capture quartz and silicates in iron ore. Because these agents are relatively simple, have low water quality requirements, and can withstand low temperatures, they are often used in flotation of iron ore. There are many kinds of pharmaceutical products, such as amine oxide, primary coconut amine, soybean oil amine, etc.


The anionic collectors used to capture iron minerals include fatty acids, fatty acid soaps, sulfated soaps, and the like. Relatively speaking, the selectivity is not as good as that of cationic collectors, and the requirements for pH value are relatively strict, and inhibitors are often used in conjunction to inhibit gangue minerals.

In positive anion flotation, the activator needs to be selected according to different ore properties. The common activator here is calcium oxide, which can make iron silicate minerals float by organic acid. The common inhibitor used for iron ore is starch, and the specific use of the agent should be determined according to the test after the properties of the ore are proved.

The above are some influencing factors of iron ore flotation. Combined with the above analysis, we can find that due to the complex nature of iron ore, the beneficiation and treatment methods of different ore types are quite different. It is also necessary to select the corresponding technological process according to the different properties of the iron ore after the test is completed, so as to obtain a good recovery effect.

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