A 3% improvement in recovery with an advanced process control system
In 2011, a complete flotation plant, which included a total of 23 Metso RCS100 flotation cells and 16 RCS40 cells, was installed and commissioned at both the Veliki Krivelj and Cerovo ore processing sites. The work was carried out in seven phases to avoid production stops. These new flotation cells provided an immediate benefit with initial improvements of 10% in throughout and a 3% increase in recovery.
The next step in getting the most out of the new flotation assets was to look at the overall automation levels for the flotation process. New plant automation, including several elements from Metso, was installed between 2013 and 2015. As an integral part of the flotation plant, Metso delivered a new Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) system that collects all of the key information from the flotation process. OCS-4D©, Metso’s advanced process control system, uses real-time operating data provided by a Metso **VisioFroth™ system, other traditional sensors and online analyzers to achieve a further 3% recovery improvement. (**As of 2022, VisioFroth has been upgraded to our new system, FrothSense+)
“With the new automation, we can see in real time what’s happening in flotation and react quickly depending on the grade variations from four different ore bodies. It takes just minutes to receive a chemical analysis, compared to the several days it took previously,” comments Saša Milić, Flotation Plant Manager. “As a result, we have succeeded in increasing our copper percentage in concentrate after flotation by more than 20%, which is a good achievement and sufficient for our new smelter,” he adds.