Barite Processing Plant
Barite (barium sulphate) is a fairly common heavy mineral that often occurs in Pb-Zn ore deposits as a gangue mineral, in sedimentary deposits, and rarely in basalts. When found in sufficient quantity, it is mined for its barium content. It occurs either in crystalline form, as tabular, prismatic, or bladed crystals, sometimes as a “cockscomb” habit, or else massive. It is often colorless, cream-colored or white, but may also be yellow, blue, pink or brown.
Barite production processing
Crude barite is turned into crushed barite which not only has its own industrial uses but also serves, in turn, as the source for the production of other barium compounds. Crushed barite is first converted to barium sulfide by high-temperature, solid-phase reduction with a carbonaceous reducing agent. Barium sulfide is the starting point for the chemical manufacture of most other barium compounds (Dibello et al. 2003). One such useful compound is lithophone consisting of 28% zinc sulfide (ZnS) and 72% barium sulfate (BaSO4), which is used as a white pigment in paints. Barium sulfate is produced from high-grade (75–98%) ore in association with granite and shale, crushed, and then beneficiated by washing, jigging, heavy-media separation, tabling, floatation, or magnetic separation (Stokinger 1981; USGS 2004). Barium carbonate (BaCO3) occurs in nature as witherite; however, it has little economic significance due to its rareness, impurities, and almost fully depleted deposits (Kresse et al. 2007).
These stand-alone grinding plants received barite from China and India for grinding to API specifications for the oil and gas drilling markets. Of the total production of ground and crushed barite ore in 2004, 94% (2,300,000 metric tons) was used in well drilling operations. Louisiana and Texas were the major U.S. consumers of processed barite ore (1,803,000 metric tons); much of this consumption was driven by exploration for natural gas. The demand for barite in the United States is expected to increase, while the level of drilling activity in North America remains high due to a strong demand in the United States for natural gas. The remaining 6% (142,000 metric tons) was used as filler and extenders and in the manufacture of glass and barium chemicals, such as barium sulfide (USGS 2004, 2006).
Barite crushing machine
In case barite can be mined selectively, it needs to be processed and milled in the following steps:
- 1) Jaw crusher as the primary crushing process,
- 2) Cone crusher 10-30 mm in secondary or tertiary crushing processes,
- 3) Mill for barite powder down to 200 – 325 mesh,
- 4) Ultrafine grinding mill for ultra-fine barite powders down to 800, 1250, 2000 and 2500 mesh.
Last update: December 24, 2011
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