At present, the industrial rare earth minerals used in China are mainly mixed rare earth ore, HXJQ China fluorocarbon antimony ore and southern weathering crust leaching ion-adsorbed rare earth ore. The development direction of HXJQ fluorocarbon antimony ore is to improve the beneficiation process and equipment and improve the recovery of ore dressing, the rate and concentrate grade.
Rare earth concentrates with a rare earth content greater than 70% should reduce costs. Scale production, providing concentrates for smelters. The southern weathering crust leaching ion-adsorbing rare earth ore should vigorously promote the use of in-situ leaching technology and improve the automation level of the leaching process. Research and development of new leaching agents, increase the concentration of rare earth in the leaching solution, and further improve the leaching rate of rare earth. It can be seen that the research and development direction of rare earth beneficiation must obey the production needs of industrial and mining enterprises and solve the practical problems existing in the industry, that is, further reduce the cost of industrial production of rare earth concentrates, and at the same time improve the grade and recovery rate of rare earth concentrates to meet the “fine materials” of enterprises. The need is conducive to enterprises to compete in the fierce market, while doing a good job in environmental protection and ecological balance and comprehensive utilization of resources.
Therefore, reducing costs, improving grades, increasing recovery rates, and improving resource utilization are the development directions of rare earth ore beneficiation in China. There are three main ways to achieve this. One is the development of new processes; the second is the development of new pharmaceuticals; the third is the development of new equipment. Any breakthrough in technology, pharmaceuticals, and equipment will bring about a revolution in rare earth beneficiation. The advancement of flotation reagents and beneficiation equipment is directly related to major innovations in the beneficiation process.
Physicochemical properties, chemical composition, mineral composition, mineral type, ore type, occurrence state, ore structure, ore structure, mineral characteristics and inlay relationship, mineral grain size and dissociation degree, mineral physics according to rare earth flotation Nature and surface properties, mineral selectivity and beneficiation methods, formulate corresponding beneficiation process; change the beneficiation process for the characteristics of new pharmaceutical and pharmaceutical systems; changes and advances in rare earth smelting technologies and methods have new for rare earth concentrates Requirements. The new rare earth beneficiation process needs to be researched and improved; the introduction and application of new equipment, and the corresponding new rare earth beneficiation process will be born; heavy one magnetic, heavy one floating, magnetic one floating, heavy one magnetic one floating It can be replaced before and after. The joint process will be the main content of the research.
At present, the collector for industrial production of rare earth minerals is mainly represented by H205, but the agent has the disadvantage of being expensive. The collectors required to be applied in the production of rare earths not only have strong collection capacity and good selection performance, but also have the characteristics of low price and low dosage. Therefore, the research of rare earth beneficiation agents should start from the following points.
- Reduce the cost of synthetic raw materials. For example, the current industrial production of hydroxamic acid is still dominated by the hydroxylamine method. The hydroxylamine method has the advantages of simple process conditions and high yield, but it has to solve the problem of high cost of the hydroxylamine of the raw material and high product cost. Therefore, lowering the price of hydroxylamine is the key to reducing the cost of synthesis of hydroxydecanoic acid production.
- The methods for producing hydroxylamine have their own characteristics. In synthetic production, appropriate industrial production methods should be adopted according to actual conditions to reduce the synthesis cost of hydroxamic acid.
- Study of the structure of the drug. The length of the collector hydrophobic group R has a large influence on the collector’s trapping power and selectivity. When synthesizing a collector having good selectivity and moderate trapping ability, care should be taken to select the length of the appropriate hydrophobic group R.
- Combination agents. Due to the positive effects of synergistic effects on the flotation process, more and more ore-dressing plants like HXJQ China are becoming aware of the limitations of single agents and have gained significant economic benefits from the practice of combination drugs. For example, aromatic hydrocarbon hydroxamic acid has good selectivity to rare earth minerals, but as a collector of flotation bastnasite, its collection ability is slightly poor, taking mixed drugs, aromatic hydrocarbon hydroxamic acid and a small amount. The combination of cycloalkyl hydroxamic acid, which has a strong ability to capture, can make up for its shortcomings and show good harvesting ability.
For another example, the hydroxamic acid collector has good performance but is expensive. The test of mixing hydroxydecanoic acid with isooctyl alcohol and oil showed that the synergistic effect was obvious, and the collection ability was enhanced while ensuring the selection performance. This experiment not only reduces the amount of hydroxamic acid agent, but also reduces the cost of industrial production.
With the advancement of rare earth beneficiation technology, HXJQ China heavy magnetic floating equipment is continuously developed. Gravity beneficiation equipment will develop equipment in the direction of small floor space and space, large processing capacity, high equipment use efficiency, high stand-alone operation rate and strong production capacity.
Magnetic beneficiation equipment requires high magnetic field strength and simple operation (solving the problem of magnetic poles being easily blocked), such as the development of high gradient magnetic separator.
The development and development of flotation equipment should also develop flotation machines with small footprint, large processing capacity, high operating rate, high efficiency and easy operation, such as improvement of flotation columns.
It is extremely important to consider the development and application of multi-functional combination beneficiation equipment that is more and more poor, fine and miscellaneous, and has both gravity, heavy floating and magnetic floating characteristics.
Why do Chinese rare earth mines attract the attention of so many people at home and abroad?
The reason is simple. The world’s largest supplier of rare earth materials is China.
Rare earth: the “vitamin” of modern industry
Rare earth is a collective term for a group of 17 elements, and is known as the “vitamin” of modern industry.
The reason why rare earth is extremely precious is not only because of the scarcity of reserves, non-renewable, separation, purification and processing, but also because it is widely used in agriculture, industry, military and other industries. It is an important support for the manufacture of new materials and the development of cutting-edge defense technology.
Especially with the continuous advancement of the world’s scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation, the application scope of rare earth elements is further expanding, and its strategic value and significance will be more prominent.
According to the BBC, last year, the US Geological Survey listed rare earths as critical to the economy and national defence.
At present, the 35 strategic elements identified by the United States and the 26 high-tech elements selected by Japan include all rare earth elements.
Developed countries such as Japan, Britain, France and Germany lack rare earth resources, but they all have world-class rare earth application technologies.
These countries regard the rare earth as a strategic element that is crucial to the economic and technological development of the country.
Support for manufacturing
For China, rare earth resources have already risen to the national strategic level.
According to the “Several Opinions on Promoting the Sustainable and Healthy Development of the Rare Earth Industry” issued by the State Council in 2011, China will establish a strategic reserve of rare earths in accordance with the combination of national reserves and enterprise (commercial) reserves, physical reserves and resources (land) reserves.
The goal put forward at that time was to support large enterprises to use capital as a link to vigorously promote resource integration through joint, merger, and reorganization, and significantly reduce the number of rare earth mining and smelting and separating enterprises, and increase industrial concentration.
In 2015, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology further proposed to realize the integration of all the rare earth mines and smelting and separating enterprises in China by the six major rare earth groups in China by the end of 2015, and realize the substantial restructuring with assets as the link.
At present, the policy objectives of the above-mentioned industry integration have achieved significant results, and the industrial concentration of China’s rare earth has been greatly improved. Specifically, in the 2015 integration, the six major rare earth groups such as Northern Rare Earth, China Minmetals, and Xiamen Tungsten Industry have integrated 22 of the 23 rare earth mines and 54 of the 59 smelting and separating companies. The pattern of the six major groups leading the production of rare earths has basically taken shape.
Author: Ashley, from HXJQ Machinery, the content manager