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BAUXITE RESIDUE FILTRATION EXPERIENCE IN GARDANNE AND ALUMINIUM OF GREECE ALUMINA PLANT

Rousseaux J-M, Langlois B, Boufounos D, Cuneo-Raffaelli A

For many alumina refineries, bauxite residue management is a main concern and for some of them the target is to produce straight from Bayer process a re-usable material, without intermediate treatment.

This paper highlights the full development of the application of Press Filter Technology on bauxite residue filtration, in two different refineries, in order to produce cake that can be handled easily so as to be sent directly to the client, who uses these residues as raw materials for several applications.

In a first part, this paper outlines the testing methodology developed and the results obtained in order to predict the performance of a full size plate and frame press-filter.

Secondly, the operational experience gathered during start-up of the Press Filter unit in Gardanne is presented. Impact of some process parameters are described in detail such as effect of solid concentration in feed flow-rate. Optimal settings of the parameters of the sequences of a complete filtration cycles are also outlined.

The paper also details some of the distinctive features of the installed unit. Finally, present results obtained from operation of Gardanne and Aluminium of Greece plate and frame Press-Filter units are compared with predicted performances based on the pilot scale tests.