Development of a Control System for Automating of Spiral Concentrators in Coal Preparation Plants

  • Josh Hoelscher
  • Yicheng Pan
  • Manoj Mohanty
  • Jarlen Don
  • Tsuchin Chu
  • Ajay Mahajan
Conference paper


Spiral concentrators have been widely used in coal preparation plants in Illinois and elsewhere to clean 1 mm ×150 μm particle size coal fraction. The major factors which have made spiral concentrator so popular include its low capital and operating cost, no chemical reagent or dense medium requirement, and the ease of operation/maintenance. Spirals are capable of providing excellent clean coal recovery although at a relatively high ash content. Like any other water-only separation process, spirals are also susceptible to continuously fluctuating feed quality and solids content in the feed slurry, which are quite common in a plant. The main objective of the project is to develop an inexpensive control system for spiral to automatically adjust the splitter position with fluctuating feed characteristics to maintain the desired effective separation specific gravity (density cut-point).


Wheatstone Bridge Pulp Density Clean Coal Flotation Column Splitter Position 
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The authors would like to acknowledge the grant provided by ICCI (# 06-1/2.1A.6) to support this work.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Josh Hoelscher
  • Yicheng Pan
  • Manoj Mohanty
  • Jarlen Don
  • Tsuchin Chu
    • 1
  • Ajay Mahajan
  1. 1.Department of Mechanical Engineering and Energy ProcessesSouthern Illinois University CarbondaleCarbondaleUSA

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