Consumption of steel grinding media in mills: A review
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In this study, the current understanding of the factors affecting the consumption of steel media in comminution systems in mineral processing are reviewed, together with models predicting wear losses in grinding media. Media wear arises as a consequence of complex interaction between a range of variables related to processing conditions, the characteristics of the media, as well as the ores or slurries, and is not well understood as yet, despite extensive study over the last 50 years and more. The three basic wear mechanisms, impact, abrasion and corrosion, can simultaneously influence mass loss in grinding media. Present studies are difficult to compare directly, owing to imprecise information with regard to the composition of the media or grinding conditions. As a result, most current models do not account for varying conditions inside the mill and their use is restricted to conditions similar to those associated with their calibration. This may not always be possible and alternative modelling methodologies are discussed and demonstrated by means of a case study on simulated data.
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