Coal and Mineral Processing


Ores and minerals: types, occurrence and distribution; basic geological and mining concepts. Overview of separation processes. Profile of mineral processing in Australia. Grade and Recovery: Two-product Formulae. Concept of Mineral Liberation. Characterization of particles. Size distributions. Size reduction: Crushing and Grinding. Separation of particles by size: Screening; Classification: Hydrocyclones. Particle separation based on mineral properties: Gravity Separation, Dense Media Separation; Magnetic and Electrostatic Separation; separation based on mineral surface properties: Froth Flotation. Chemistry of flotation: activators, depressants, collectors, frothers. Flotation equipment. Dewatering of mineral slurries: Thickening, Filtration, Centrifuges. Tailings disposal. Environmental and safety issues. Examples of Plant layout and Circuit design.



  • Semester 2 - 2015

Learning Outcomes

1. The place of mining and minerals in the Australian economy.

2. A basic knowledge of geology and mining leading to and understanding of the concepts of ores and their processing needs.

3. Acquire knowledge of crushing and grinding of coal and ores.

4. Understand the scientific principles of size distribution of minerals and its application to size separation processes.

5. Learn about the economic importance of the concentration of value minerals and how this is achieved.

6. Introduce students to methods used to evaluate and predict equipment performance and design mineral processing circuits


  • Introduction to the minerals industry. What is mineral processing.
  • Mineral liberation through comminution, particle size analysis and size distributions.
  • Coal as compared to hard rock crushing and grinding.
  • Size classification: screens and hydrocyclones.
  • Mineral concentration: roughing and cleaning, removal of gangue material from value products by gravity techniques, heavy medium separation, flotation.
  • Environmental and safety considerations specific to the mining industry.

Assessment Items

Written Assignment: Assignment 1

Written Assignment: Assignment 2

Written Assignment: Assignment 3

In Term Test: Class Exam

Written Assignment: Assignment 4

Written Assignment: Assignment 5

Formal Examination: Formal Examination

Contact Hours


Field Study

Face to Face Off Campus 4 hour(s) per Week for 1 Weeks


Face to Face On Campus 4 hour(s) per Week for 12 Weeks