2007 39th CMP • Passive Sonar Technology in Minerals Processing and Oil Sands

Application of Passive Sonar Technology to Minerals Processing and Oil Sands Applications

Date of Conference: 
January 24, 2007
Christian O'Keefe, John Viega, Mark Fernald
Abstract / Introduction: 

In this presentation, the SONARtracTM technology platform will be described. CiDRA's proprietary clamp-on, passive sonar array-based flow meter technology performs two independent measurements – flow rate and fluid characterization. Firstly, the meter provides the volumetric flow rate of the mixture by measuring the speed at which naturally occurring turbulent structures convect with the flow past an axial array of sensors. Secondly, the meter uses similar sonar-based processing techniques and naturally occurring sound in the process fluid to measure entrained air levels. The result is a unique ability to measure the flow rate and entrained air level of most fluids – clean liquids, high solids content slurries, and liquids and slurries with entrained air.

Also to be presented is the application of the sonar-based technology platform in a variety of oil sands processes, hydrotransport, and minerals beneficiation applications. In particular, difficult slurry flow measurement and control in the areas of comminution and flotation such as mill discharge, hydrocyclone feed/overflow, final concentrate, thickener discharge, and tailings will be discussed. In addition new real time maintenance free process measurement capability will be presented in the areas of entrained air in slurry, collection zone gas holdup (g), and slurry velocity profiling. The operational advantages and value of these measurements, even in the presence of scale buildup, will be discussed.

Reference number: 
Asset type: 
Technical Paper