Why Sodium Silicate Is The Most Common Inhibitor of Scheelite Flotation

There are many inhibitors of scheelite flotation, but the most popular and widely used is sodium silicate, which is recognized by industry as the most effective and cost effective inhibitor.

Sodium silicate, commonly known as water glass, the molecular formula Na2SiO3 is a water-soluble silicate, is a kind of mineral binder, non-sulfide ore, especially a typical inhibitor of silicate minerals. Sodium silicate is selected in the floating scheelite and playing two main functions: one is to make the silica gel modified by physical adsorption on mineral surface, two is the adsorption of SiO32-, HSiO3-, OH- and H+ on the surface of quartz and silicate minerals, which increases the electronegativity and hydrophilicity of the mineral surface.

In scheelite flotation process, sodium silicate was inhibited in quartz, calcite and silicate, generally speaking, sodium silicate is selective when used in low dosage, but using too much will lose the selectivity.

water glass image

Therefore, in order to deal with the complex components of scheelite, people will find helper for sodium silicate, and achieve the ideal effect through the collocation of flotation. The main auxiliary of sodium silicate mainly has the following three members:

1. Metal ions such as AL3+, Mg2+, Cu2+, Fe2+, Ca2+, the combination of sodium silicate with these multivalent metal cations can be effective for fluorite and calcite, the main reason is that sodium silicate and metal cation form metal silicate colloid, and the selectivity of adsorption is enhanced.

2. Sodium silicate combined with Na2CO3. This combination can be used for the separation of scheelite from silicate minerals, its main function is CO32-, HCO3- can be preferentially adsorbed to the surface of calcium minerals, prevent the adsorption of sodium silicate, moreover, silicate minerals can be strongly inhibited by sodium silicate.

3. Temperature. The pulp heated 60-80 °C, can be used for separation of scheelite and calcite, the reason is that the sodium silicate can selectively remove the oleate anion on the calcite surface after heating.

Thus, in the process of scheelite flotation, how to use sodium silicate inhibitors is also a skill, whether it is heated flotation or room temperature flotation, according to the characteristics of sodium silicate can make scheelite flotation to achieve a multiplier effect.

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