Authors: Sellgren, A; Mustafa, A; Addie, G; Whitlock, L


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Sellgren, A, Mustafa, A, Addie, G & Whitlock, L 2011, 'Performance of different centrifugal slurry pump impeller configurations when pumping thickened tailings', in R Jewell & AB Fourie (eds), Proceedings of the 14th International Seminar on Paste and Thickened Tailings, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 405-415,

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The performance for two tailings products has been investigated with a standard closed shroud impeller (diameter 0.3 m) and an open shroud type having an auger-like inducer. The tailings products had a median particle size of about 70 and 50 µm. For the open impeller reductions in water head and efficiency were 7 and 14% respectively, with the coarser product at solids concentrations by volume of about 47% when operating in the best efficiency region (BEP). The corresponding reductions were about 10 and 20% respectively, for the finer product with a slight tendency of increasing reduction in head for very low flow rates. Unstable head curves were observed for flow rates less than about 50% of the BEP-values with the finer product for the open and closed impeller at 49 and 47% respectively. When operating within the BEP region for these concentrations, the reduction in efficiency was evaluated at about 20% for both types of impellers. The slightly higher sensitivity to an unstable head for low flow rates for the standard closed impeller can be weighted to the 10% higher efficiency compared to the open version with an auger-inducer. The pump performance reduction factors and the pipeline friction losses at a volumetric concentration of 47% were in the order of 1.5 times larger for the finer product.

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