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MEI Online: Hydrometallurgy: Latest News: May 14th 2010


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:: HyperSpargeTM - The New Generation in Sparging

Xstrata Technology has developed and successfully trialled a new gas sparging technology that improves the efficiency of air or oxygen injection into reaction vessels. Originally developed for the Albion Process, it is well suited for other mineral processing duties, leaching processes and other industrial duties.

The HyperSpargeTM system allows for increased reaction rates and reduced reagent consumptions when compared with conventional sparging systems. Safety is central to the design of the HyperSpargeTM, with all materials fully compatible with oxygen injection. The system is designed with fail-safe protection to allow live insertion and removal of the sparger from the process vessel without any downtime.

The key to the technology is the injection of oxygen into slurries or solutions at supersonic velocities. This results in regions of very high local shear and when combined with the fine mist of bubbles generated by the sparger, provides the most efficient method of transfer of oxygen into the slurry phase.

The HyperSpargeTM incorporates a hard wearing ceramic nozzle to accelerate the gas stream and maximise turbulence at the injection point. The sparger is designed for easy maintenance, and can be inserted into the side of the reactor without the need for internal supports, simplifying reaction vessel construction. Sealing of the sparger around the insertion point is achieved through a robust system incorporating a non return valve, block and bleed and dual seals.

HyperSpargeTM can be used in a wide range of applications, including:

  • Oxidative leaching of sulphide ores
  • CIP/CIL processing of gold ores
  • Pre-aeration of flotation pulps
  • Wastewater treatment
  • Reagent preparation
  • Fermentation
  • Pharmaceutical and Chemical production




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