Pirouz, B, Seddon, K, Pavissich, C, Williams, P & Echevarria, J 2013, 'Flow through tilt flume testing for beach slope evaluation at Chuquicamata Mine Codelco, Chile', in R Jewell, AB Fourie, J Caldwell & J Pimenta (eds), Proceedings of the 16th International Seminar on Paste and Thickened Tailings
, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 457-472.
A series of tilting (variable slope) flume tests were undertaken at the pilot plant facility at Chuquicamata copper mine in northern Chile to study the achievable tailings beach slope for different tailings solids concentrations and flowrates. The pilot plant facility was part of a prefeasibility study into upgrading the existing conventional tailings disposal facility, to a thickened tailings disposal scheme.
The tilting flume facility was included into the pilot plant trial to produce reliable data for verification of theoretical beach slope prediction models. The tests were conducted on existing tailings from the Chuquicamata plant.
A pilot size (2.5 m diameter) thickener was used to thicken the slurry to higher solids concentration before feeding the tilting flume. A range of different slurry flowrates (ranging from 5.5 to 18 L/s) and solids concentrations (ranging from 56.5 to 72.5%) were tested.
The testing methodology, the test results and analysis, are discussed in this paper. The actual measured beach slope (based on hydrodynamics of channel flow theory) for each flowrate and slurry solids concentration are also presented.
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