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The mining industry is moving towards thickened tailings with higher density than conventional operations. As a result, tailings transportation is more challenging due to the material’s tendency to exhibit
non-Newtonian behaviour at high solid concentration. One of the practical ways to transport tailings, where the terrain allows, is to gravitate the tailings through open channels from the thickening plant to the tailings disposal area. But in comparison to pipe flow, the flow of non-Newtonian thickened tailings through open channels has not received sufficient attention in the literature. This paper presents a set of models developed to predict the flow behaviour in the laminar transitional and turbulent regimes through open channels. The flow behaviour predictions of these semi-theoretical models are discussed and validated against previously published experimental data.
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