Iron Ore Processing
Written by admin on September 18, 2023 in Construction

People often wonder ‘What is iron ore?’ So today, let’s embark on discovering all the fascinating facts about iron ore. Iron ore is often called the “lifeblood of modern industry” because of all its offerings. So, without further ado, let’s understand:

What Is Iron Ore?

From the colossal skyscrapers that pierce the heavens to the mighty ships that conquer vast oceans, iron ore is the elemental force that forges our infrastructure and fuels our progress. It is used in a variety of ways, including in the production of steel. However, it can also be a pollutant. When iron ore is exposed to air, it creates rust. This rust can contaminate water and soil and make them unusable.

For this reason, it is important to remove iron ore from these areas. After being removed from the mine, i.e. after the iron ore mining process, iron ore must go through several processing iron ore steps.

Now that we are understanding ‘what is iron ore?’ and learning more about iron ore, let’s start first with knowing the procedure for processing iron ore.

What Is Iron Ore Processing?

Screening

Before crushing, we advise screening the iron ore to remove small particles smaller than the crusher’s CSS. The tiny particles are sent to a static screen for crushing. This process keeps the crusher from being overloaded and boosts its effectiveness.

Fine particles reduce the efficiency of the crusher and increase the power draught required to crush such small particles, increasing the kW/hr per tonne crushed. The performance of the crusher is considerably improved by screening and diverting tiny particles.

To know more about this process and iron ore mining, contact us and learn all about iron ore, polyurethane, and the associated processes of processing iron ore.

Stockpiling And Crushing

Before being crushed, the iron ore must first be broken up to an F 80 grind size. The crushed ore is then sent to a stockpile after being crushed. This phase aims to guarantee a seamless crushing process, reduce downtime in the case of a breakdown, or enable scheduled maintenance in the crushing system without interrupting the grinding and other subsequent processes. However, you must keep in mind that the effectiveness of the plant as a whole might be impacted if the crusher malfunctions.

Feeding The Crusher (Reclaim)

The surge pile makes it possible to feed the mill with a steady material stream, ensuring consistency and stability in the recovery iron ore process.

Grinding

By using Bond’s work index for the process calculation, this phase entails keeping the material within the mill for a set amount of time (with or without grinding balls). This index considers factors such as feed size, mill speed, material recirculation, target fineness, and ore hardness. Iron ore is separated into fine particles when it leaves the mill by cyclones or vibrating screens.

While the tiny particles travel through a spiral gravity separation process, the big particles are sent back into the crusher. This is how grinding is done in iron ore processing.

Spiral Gravity Separation

The solid concentration range for gravity separation feed is around 30%. To help with the separation process, process water is employed. Centrifugal force separates the heavier particles from the smaller ones. Each spiral’s bottom collector removes the lighter undesirable particles while collecting the heavy concentration, also known as hematite concentrate (middlings and tails). Depending on the required release and the iron concentration, this process is repeated two or three times. This way, spiral gravity separation is carried out in iron ore processing. Wondering about spiral gravity separation or any other mining iron ore process? Contact us today to solve all your doubts.

Magnetic Division

After spiral gravity separation, the concentrate obtained from the middlings and tails has a lower iron content (magnetite), thus, more concentration is necessary to get it up to the customer’s desired 65% Fe concentration. It is instantly sent to a circuit for a magnetic separator. Magnetic material is gathered by magnetised drums so that it can be further concentrated (magnetite iron minerals content). When mixed with bentonite or another comparable binding agent, the lighter particles separated during the spiral gravity separation process are formed into balls and fried in an induction oven. This is referred to as pelletisation. Rejected non-magnetised material is directed to the disposal area for residue (tailing).

Depending on the size, hardness, and particle composition, there may be numerous crushing, grinding, and mineral separation processes. To learn more about all these steps in iron ore processing along with iron ore mining, contact us today.

The best advice we can provide is to get to know your machinery and utilise materials designed specifically for iron processing. Our team of professionals can guide you through the phases of processing iron ore and all the necessary Australian mining equipment and answer any questions concerning cyclones, spirals, drums, and samplers.

Visit our Australian Mining Product and Services to see what our professionals are equipped with to help you in your processing iron ore journey or what other services we can offer. Alternatively, call us on 1300 241 620 to speak to our experts today and learn all about the mining iron ore process.

Types Of Iron Ore In Australia

Australia is a country that boasts a rich amount of iron ore, and several types are extracted and processed to meet both domestic and international demands. Let’s discuss the primary types:

Hematite:

Hematite is the most common type of iron ore found in Australia, and it is known for its high iron content, making it ideal for steel production. These Australian hematite deposits are typically found in Western Australia’s Pilbara region.

Magnetite:

Magnetite is another significant type of iron ore found in Australia with higher iron content than Hematite. This is one of the main reasons it is widely used for high-grade steel production. Magnetite deposits are often located in South Australia. Knowing these uses, you will no longer have to wonder ‘What is iron ore used for’.

Goethite And Limonite:

These iron ore types have a lower iron content than hematite and magnetite and are mainly used in lower-grade steel production and as a pigment in paints. They are commonly found in the Yilgarn Craton region of Western Australia.

FAQs:

Iron iron is used for many applications; however, it is widely used for steel production.

In Australia, iron ore is used mainly for export, contributing significantly to the country's economy.

The future of iron ore in Australia significantly depends on global demand and market dynamics.

Australia's iron ore reserves are expected to last for several decades.

China is the largest buyer of Australian iron ore.