Characterization of Saman-Burkono (Nigeria) Graphite for Crucible Production

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O. A. Dahunsi
M. O. Adeoti
O. O. Awopetu
F. O. Aramide
O. O. Alabi
A. S. Abdulkareem

Abstract

Graphite from Saman-Burkono in Ningi Local Government Area of Bauchi State was collected in lumps, reduced to size using geological hammer and further crushed and grinded using Denver Jaw crusher (Model KJH23) and Denver ball mill (Model 101A) respectively. Coned and Quartering sampling method was used to draw a good representative sample passing through 200µm sieve size. Chemical characterization (Proximate analysis) of the graphite’s head sample showed that it contained SiO2, Al2O3, Fe2O3, K2O, TiO2, MnO, V2O5, Cr2O3 and PbO in different proportions, with silica (SiO2) having the highest composition of 67.14%. The analysis indicated that the carbon content in the crude graphite was far below 70% which is the required standard for the suitability of graphite ore for crucible production, hence the need for beneficiation using the method of froth flotation with Kerosene as the frothier in the presence of pine oil as the collector and sodium hydroxide as the pH regulator with flotation time was done. The optimum pulp condition for the floatation method was found to be at 0.5 m/s of kerosene, 0.5 m/s of pine oil using a charge of 500 g of graphite ore with 1000 m/s of water at agitation speed of 2000 rev/min at optimum time of 5 minutes and 10 minutes respectively. The results showed that the graphite sample contained 62% Graphite and Quartz of 32% before beneficiation but 95% Graphite and 5% Carbon was obtained after beneficiation. This showed an increase of 33% in graphite and decrease of silica in form of quartz in the crude sample. The crude graphite samples had specific gravity of 3.52 g/cms3 before beneficiation and 6.2 g/cm3 after beneficiation. The quality of graphite obtained as a result of this research work can reasonably and favorably compared with the quality of the ones available in the market based on requirements for crucible production.

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