Determination of the shape, morphological and wettability properties of quartz and their correlations
The distributions of particle sizes and shapes are of great importance to industries employing various materials in powdered form. These include many of the raw materials in civil and chemical engineering, pharmaceutical, and mining industries; pigments, metals, ceramics, pills, foods; industries with interests in population of atmospheric dusts, smoke, and grit. The flow of fluids through beds of particles, the flowability of powders, bulk flow, and packing necessitate a considerable knowledge of the size and shape of constituent particles. In this paper, experimental studies to determine the shape properties, surface roughness and wettability of quartz mineral (a very common component many raw materials) were performed for the products of ball, rod and autogenous mills. Shape properties have been stated in terms of shape descriptors such as elongation, flatness, roundness, and relative width by measuring on the projections of particles using scanning electron microscope (SEM). Surface roughness values have been expressed by the parameters of R-a value on the pelleted surfaces of the ground powders by employing Surtronic 3(+) instrument. The wettability characteristics (gamma(c)) of quartz mineral determined by microflotation technique using the EMDEE MicroFLOT test tube. Finally, some correlations were found between the shape properties, surface roughness values and wettability. The results have shown that, the gamma(c) values increase with increasing roughness and roundness, i.e., elongated and smooth particles having lower gamma(c) values indicated more hydrophobicity. (C) 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.