PhD Project title Numerical modelling of an autoclave
(Supervisors: Prof D Deglon, Dr CJ Meyer and Prof J-P Franzidis) Graduated: 2012
There are many stages involved in the extraction of minerals. Various vessels with unique characteristics are used for each of them. The autoclave is one of the vessels commonly used in the leaching process. The vessel is normally divided into a number of compartments, each agitated by an impeller and separated by weir walls. Oxygen is fed in the compartments to oxidize the metals and to remove the excess heat from the highly exothermic reactions. These reactions are controlled by the gas hold-up and most importantly gas-liquid mass transfer, such that an understanding of the processes involved is important for their optimisation.
The first compartment of this vessel was numerically investigated for this study. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) was used to numerically model and investigate the inherent flows and phenomenological mechanisms. A scaled-down model of the first compartment of an autoclave was investigated. The commercial CFD package FLUENT 12 was used for the numerical modelling. Both single-phase and multiphase flow was investigated.
Peer-reviewed journal publications
Appa, H., Deglon, D.A. and Meyer, C.J. 2014. Numerical modelling of mass transfer in an autoclave. Hydrometallurgy, 147-148: 234-240
Appa, H., Deglon, D.A. and Meyer, C.J. 2013. Numerical modelling of hydrodynamics and gas dispersion in an autoclave. Hydrometallurgy, 131-132: 67-75.
Oral Conference presentations
Appa H, Deglon D.A and Meyer C. 2011 Numerical modelling of an autoclave. SAIMM Mineral Processing Conference, Cape Town, 4-5 August 2011
Appa, H., Deglon, D.A. and Meyer, C. 2010. The numerical modeling of hydrodynamics, gas dispersion and mass transfer in an autoclave, SAIMM (Western Cape Branch) Conference, Cape Town, 7-8 August 2010.