For sludge dewatering: Flottweg Peru installs a high-performance Z92 decanter
The mechanical separation of solids and liquids by means of centrifugal force is becoming increasingly accepted in the mining industry. This is due to stricter environmental regulations, limited space availability and increased requirements for cost-effectiveness.
Mining company Andalucita is in the process of expanding production at its mining facility in Piura, Peru. The focus was on the technological upgrade of Area 9, which included the installation of a centrifugal dewatering system to improve sludge handling while meeting Peruvian environmental regulations.
The sludge ponds currently in use utilize natural gravity for solid-liquid separation. This means that the water must be successively fed into different ponds until the desired clarification is achieved. The resulting sludge has a solids content of 15% by weight. In order to prevent the sludge ponds from overflowing, they are mechanically dredged and the solids are disposed of by truck.
Flottweg supplied Andalucita with the right separation solution in the form of the Z92: Flottweg's Z92 industrial centrifuge has a capacity of 100 m³/h or 440 gpm (in times of high demand, up to 120 m³/h, or 528 gpm), which can be processed continuously. The feed has a solids content of 5-9%, and after decanting, a continuous solids discharge of 75% is available. The discharged solid material can be easily transported by conveyor belts and then via trucks to the landfill sites
Mines are often difficult to access, making the use of large equipment both expensive and difficult. For this very reason, the Flottweg decanter is designed to be very compact. The Z92 industrial centrifuge fits into a 40' HC container, is easy to transport and does not require extensive construction work on site. The control panels are also housed in a 20' container next to the pump and polymer tank systems. In this particular case, Andalucita requested a larger 40' container to accommodate an air-conditioned office for the operator. The main advantage is that it is an automated system and can be operated 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Downtime for filter replacement is not required. Since it is a closed system, product leakage is almost impossible.
A summary of all the advantages of using an industrial centrifuge for sludge dewatering in mines:
- Continuous operation, 24 hours a day.
- Low infrastructure requirements compared to those of the filter presses originally considered for this process.
- The ability to operate in the open air, even if the site is in a very windy or dusty location.
- Total downtime of five days per year for equipment maintenance.
- Only one person is required to monitor the system.
- On-site training by factory personnel.