FLSmidth awarded 2020 Horizon grant to enhance flotation expertise within Mining


FLSmidth, together with several partners were awarded a 2020 Horizon grant (1.4 mil Euros in total, 0.74 mil Euros to FLSmidth) that will allow the Mining Flotation team to enhance their fundamental knowledge of flotation technology through the help of 5 Ph.D. students and world class flotation scientists.


In recent years, FLSmidth has participated in targeted collaborations with universities that have process knowledge and capability relevant to our business. Last year, we were approached to be the leading industrial partner in an application for EU funded research project with the aim of conducting research to advance our knowledge and understanding of flotation in Mining while benchmarking various flotation technologies to each other.


Flotation is extremely complex and requires a great deal of understanding in mechanical, process and metallurgical challenges. Since it is a key process area with impacts on upstream comminution and downstream dewatering, there is huge potential to save energy and resources through the innovations in refining flotation process technology.


Helmholtz Center Dresden Rossendorf (HZDR) and FLSmidth proposed a project named “FlotSim” with the goal of drastically improving the recovery rates of flotation through fundamental flotation analysis and comparing the industrial state-of-the-art technologies to each other. This fundamental research, along with strong internal R&D efforts, will advance our existing and developing flotation products including forced air nextSTEP™, naturally aspirated WEMCO®, fast flotation REFLUX (RFC™) and coarse particle coarseAIR™ flotation cells. In addition to furthering fundamental understanding, these efforts will allow for improved simulation models allowing optimized equipment selection and flowsheet design.


Improved next generation flotation processes are mandatory to remain economically competitive and to respond to sustainable mining for future generations. The FlotSim collaboration with industry and university partners, along with recruitment of five early stage PhD research candidates will address some of these important societal challenges.


The researchers will each spend between 3-6 months working alongside our Flotation experts in Salt Lake City to bolster our understanding and knowledge base. They will jointly investigate and model the flotation processes with its complex interactions between valuable mineral particles, gas bubbles, and turbulent flow, addressing phenomena from the nanoscale to the scale of pilot machines, with focus on traditional and novel flotation techniques.


Burcin Temel Mckenna
Head of R&D Cement Process and Systems
(previously R&D Director of Research and Partnerships in R&D Mining)

FLSmidth nextSTEP and WEMCO cells working together