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International Journal of Civil, Mechanical and Energy Science (IJCMES)

Infogain Publication (Infogainpublication.com)

[Vol-2, Issue-2, March-April, 2016]


ISSN : 2455-5304

Beneficiation of Ajabanoko Iron Ore Deposit, Kogi


State, Nigeria Using Magnetic Methods
Alabi, Oladunni Oyelola
National Metallurgical Development Centre, P.M.B 2116, Jos.
AbstractThe Ajabanoko iron ore head sample assaying
40.72% was subjected to both Rapid Magnetic Separation
and Wet High Intensity Separation (WHIMS) methods to
upgrade its iron content to standard requirement for iron
and steel production in Nigerian Metallurgical industries.
Chemical analysis conducted on the processed samples
from Rapid Magnetic Separator and WHIMS gave iron
content of 62.55%, 53.98% and low acid oxide gangue of
9.9% and 17.98% respectively at screen size of -0.500 +
0.355 mm These results indicated that Fe and the
theoretical recovery determination of the Rapid Magnetic
Separator meets the requirement of Blast Furnace process
for iron and steel production, but does not meet that of the
direct reduction method of iron and steel production; While
the assay and recovery of WHIMS does not in anyway meet
the Standard requirement of iron and steel production in
Nigeria.
KeywordsAjabanoko Iron Ore, Rapid Magnetic
Separation , wet high intensity magnetic separator.
I.
INTRODUCTION
Iron ore is the source of primary iron for the world's iron
and steel industries. It is therefore essential for the
production of steel, which in turn is essential to maintain a
strong industrial base [7]. Two main types of iron ore used
for iron making Magnetite (Fe3O4) and Hematite (Fe2O3).
Hematite deposits are mostly sedimentary in origin [1].
Magnetite also mostly found in banded iron formations
(BIF) [1, 7].
Almost all (98%) iron ore is used in steelmaking. Iron ore is
mined in about 50 countries of the world. The seven largest
of these producing countries account for about threequarters of total world production. Australia and Brazil
together dominate the world's iron ore exports, each
having about one-third (1/3) of total exports [2].
Most of the mined out Iron ore contains lot of impurities
that needs beneficiation prior to use. Inferior sources of iron
ore generally required beneficiation. Research on utilization
of low grade Iron ore to produce quality raw material would
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play a key role in future which is a fact acknowledged by


the Iron and Steel industry.
Magnetic separation and flotation are the most widely
accepted technologies for the upgrading of iron ore
particles, but these processes result in iron concentrate with
high amounts of very fine and/or interlocked silica particles
[ 3 ].
II.
BENEFICIATION
Very low grade Iron ore cannot be used in metallurgical
plants and needs to be upgraded to increase the iron content
and reduce the gangue content. A process adopted to
upgrade ore is called Beneficiation [4]. Iron ore is upgraded
to higher iron content through concentration. Iron ore is
being beneficiated all round the world to meet the quality
requirement of Iron and Steel industries. However, each
source of Iron ore has its own peculiar mineralogical
characteristics and requires the specific beneficiation and
metallurgical treatment to get the best product out of it. The
choice of the beneficiation treatment depends on the nature
of the gangue present and its association with the ore
structure. Several techniques such as washing, jigging,
magnetic separation, advanced gravity separation and
flotation are being employed to enhance the quality of the
iron ore [5, 6, 8 ].
The aim of this research work is to investigate the
possibility of using magnetic separation methods to produce
iron ore concentrate that could be used as a charge quality
in Nigerian steel plants.
III.
EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES
Materials:
Materials to be used in this practical work include: Low
grade metasedimentry Ajabanoko Iron ore sourced from a
deposit located in the Okene-Kabba-Lokoja triangle which
host some other deposits from Kogi State of Nigeria.
Methods:
20Kg of Ajabanoko iron ore was crushed using Denver Jaw
crusher from 20-10mm to 5mm, this was later reduced to
2mm using Denver cone crusher and then Beco roll crusher
Page | 91

International Journal of Civil, Mechanical and Energy Science (IJCMES)


[Vol-2, Issue-2, March-April, 2016]
Infogain Publication (Infogainpublication.com)
ISSN : 2455-5304
was used to further reduce the ore to -0.500 + 0.355 mm
collected as two separate heaps, weighed and analyzed
which is the liberation size. 5kg out of the prepared 20kg Iron
separately using ED-XFR spectrometer and results were as
ore at -0.500 + 0.355mm was sampled out using cut and
seen in tables 1 - 3.
quartering method and was charged into the vibrating feeder
Wet high Intensity Magnetic separator (WHIMS) operates
through hopper. Magnetic separation was done especially in
using magnetic fields in the presences of water as the
the case of hematite ore, on to leather conveyor belt, which
separating medium, to separate magnetic from non
moves over two rollers, across three magnetized discs in
magnetic material. 5kg of Ajabanoko iron ore was mixed
regulated known different electromagnetic fields of between
with water in the ratio of 1:4 it was then charged into the
4 to 6 Amps and at 80 volts. When the ore passes over
feeder line channeled into the WHIMS set to produce a
conveyor belt, it sticks to the disc due to the electromagnetic
magnetic field at 4 amps, 80 volts. Then the pure Iron
force created and falls into the side collectors due to the drop
reported at the magnetic arms while gangue reported at the
in the electromagnetic force of attraction in the magnetized
non magnetic arm of the machine. Representative samples
disc. The gangue goes along the belt and fall over readily at
were drawn using cut and quartering sampling method; after
the end with no magnetic force. The Iron hand was repeated
sun drying and weighing. These samples were taken for
twice. The magnetic ore and the non magnetic impurity were
analysis. Results of analysis are as seen on Tables 1-3.
IV.

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION.

Results:
Results of all the experiments carried out are presented in Tables 1 3.
Table1: Results of Yield using Magnetic Separations.
Equipment
Charge (Kg)
Concentrate
Middling
(Kg)
(Kg)
Rapid Mag. Sep
5.0
2.7
0.03
WHIMS
5.0
3.3
0.05
Table 2: Chemical Analysis of Crude and Processed Ajabanako Iron Ore Sample.
Sample
Al2O3 SiO2
P2O3 SO3 K2O CaO TiO2 Cr2O3 MnO
Crude
34.40 ND
ND
0.08 0.23
0.06
0.20
ND
Mag. conc
0.45
9.60
0.18
0.03 0.02 0.14
ND
0.18
0.007
Mag.Tailing
0.63
88.61 ND
0.29 0.30 0.30
0.04
0.21
0.03
WHIMS conc 0.54
17.30 0.10
ND
0.05 0.18
0.12
0.19
0.01
WHIMS
0.58
87.00 ND
ND
0.33 0.69
0.13
0.15
0.03
Tailings

Fe2O3
58.22
89.44
7.24
77.18
9.52

Tailing
(Kg)
1.7
1.3

Fe
40.72
62.55
5.06
53.98
6.66

CuO
0.04
0.06
0.06
0.09
0.06

MgO
ND
0.20
0.13
0.18
0.14

Na2O
0.23
0.11
0.10
0.24

Table 3: Theoretical Recovery in Both Rapid Magnetic and WHIMS Methods of Separation.
Equipment
Charge( Kg)
Concentrate (Kg)
Assay
Recovery
Cc /Ff x100

CRUDE
Mag Sept (Conc)
Mag.Sept.(Tailings)
WHIMS Conc
WHIMS Tailings

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5.0
5.0
5.0
5.0
5.0

2.7
1.7
3.3
1.3

40.72
62.55
5.06
53.98
6.66

(%)
80.30
4.22
87.49
4.25

Page | 92

International Journal of Civil, Mechanical and Energy Science (IJCMES)


[Vol-2, Issue-2, March-April, 2016]
Infogain Publication (Infogainpublication.com)
ISSN : 2455-5304
V.
DISCUSSION
VI.
CONCLUSION
Results obtained from processing Ajabanako iron ore using
The crude Ajabanoko Iron ore with grade that assayed
both magnetic and Wet High Intensity Magnetic Separation
40.72% iron was successfully upgraded to high concentrate
is as seen on tables 1-3.These results were compared with
by Rapid Magnetic Separator and Wet High Intensity
those obtained in standard requirement of both Blast
Magnetic Separation (WHIMS) with higher iron content of
furnace in Ajaokuta and Direct Reduction Plant in Delta
62.55% and 53.98% and low acid oxide gangue of 9.9% and
Steel Plant Ovwian - Alaja respectively [9,10].
17.98% respectively. The figure in Rapid magnetic
Table 1, is the results of the yield in terms of mass obtain in
separation meets the requirement of 62-65% Fe (minimum)
both Rapid Magnetic Separation and that of WHIMS. The
and 3.0% (maximum) silica+ Alumina + titanium oxide
Rapid Magnetic Separation gave a mass of concentrate to be
[9,11 ] in the production of Nigerian iron and steel in Steel
2.7Kg and tailing 1.7 kg; While in WHIMS mass of
Industries using Blast Furnace .
concentrate is 3.3Kg and tailings 1.3Kg. From this it can be
Others Are Technical staff under the Department of Mineral
seen that more quantity of Iron Ore was recovered in
Processing, who contributed so much during this research
WHIMS than in the Rapid Magnetic Separation. This
work.
implies that the quantity by mass of Concentrate obtained in
WHIMS is higher than that obtained in Rapid Magnetic
Separation method.
Table 2, is the Chemical analysis of crude (40.72%Fe) and
processed Ajabanoko iron ore recovered from the process;
showing the iron content and acidic oxide gangue.
Percentage Iron ore in Rapid magnetic separation
concentrate is 62.55%Fe and 9.9%. While in WHIMS,
assay of concentrate is 53.98%Fe and 17.98%.This means
that the grade or assay of Ajabanoko iron ore (%Fe)
processed using Rapid Magnetic method of separation is
better than the assay obtained in WHIMS.
Table 3, Is the theoretical recovery in both magnetic and
WHIMS methods of separation. The recovery in processing
with WHIMS Concentration is 87.49% and WHIMS Tailing
4.25%, while recovery in processing with Magnetic
separation Concentrate is 80.30%.and in its tailing is
4.22%.This means that in terms of recovery WHIMS
supersedes Rapid Magnetic Separation method of
beneficiation of Ajabanoko iron ore and reverse is the case
in terms of grade.

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REFERENCE
[1] http://www.steelworld.com/technology7.pdf
[2] American
Metal
Market's
website
at
http://www.amm.com
[3] New Steel Magazinehttp://www.newsteel.com
[4] B.A wills, Mineral Processing Technology, 5th
Edition., Pergamum Press, Oxford, 1992.
[5] Metal Bulletin at http://www.metalbulletin.com
[6] http://minmetandeqip.blogspot.com/2008/02/iron-oreand-its-beneficiation.
[7] Itakpe
Mine
Project
Guide
Report,(1977);NSDA/SOFREMINES, March, 1977,95
98.
[8] http://www.psranawat.org/mettalic/ironore.htm
[9] Raw Material and Products Specification for Steel
Industries, Federal Ministry of Mines,
[10] Power and Steel, Abuja, Nigeria, 1994.
[11] Process [A journal of CSIRO research in mineral
processing and metal production]. Pp 2-12, Oct. 2004.

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