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ArticleName Flotation and magnetic methods to recover non-ferrous metals from low grade technogenic raw materials
DOI 10.17580/tsm.2019.02.02
ArticleAuthor Chernousenko E. V., Mitrofanova G. V., Vishnyakova I. N., Kameneva Yu. S.

Mining Institute — Subdivision of the Federal Research Center “Kola Science Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences”, Apatity, Russia:

E. V. Chernousenko, Researcher
G. V. Mitrofanova, Lead Researcher, e-mail:
I. N. Vishnyakova, Junior Researcher
Yu. S. Kameneva, Junior Researcher


Mining plants, operating for many years, collect billions of tons of ore mining and beneficiation wastes in their disposal areas and tailing storage facilities. Maintenance of such facilities requires considerable capital and material expenses, and stored crushed tailings pollute soil and air due to water and wind erosion. Ecological safety may be improved by both processing the stored tailings and maximum recovery of all commercial components. This paper is devoted to two types of low grade technogenic raw materials: stored copper-nickel tailings taken from the tailings dam of JSC Kola MMC and gravity concentration tailings as a result of a tested technology of processing columbite ore of the prospective Zashikhinsky deposit. The authors analyze the flotation and magnetic methods to additionally recover non-ferrous metals from raw materials under study. Using a flotation method for copper-nickel concentration tailings, the authors manufactured the product, containing 0.39% of nickel and 0.20% of copper, and recovering 44 and 59%, respectively. The magnetic separation method showed higher recovery of nickel (49–60%) and lower content of nickel in tailings. The most feasible process flow combines magnetic and flotation methods, with the magnetic separation at the “head” of the process. Having tested a broad range of collecting agents, the authors proposed a reagent scheme to produce a lithium product containing 0.24–0.56% of Li2O with a recovery rate of 65.7–58.0%. Further magnetic separation of the manufactured product in a strong field provides the lithium concentrate with 3.26% of Li2O and a recovery rate of up to 40 % of initial raw materials.
Research was carried out with the financial support of Fundamental Research Program of RAS I.39 and grant provided by the Russian Science Foundation No. 14-17-00761 - P. 

keywords Beneficiation tailings, copper-nickel ores, columbite ore, lithium concentrate, flotation, magnetic separation

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