Processing a rare earth mineral deposit using gravity and magnetic separation

Richard Sheridan, Adam Jordens, Kristian Waters, Neil Rowson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


Rare earth (RE) mineral deposits are typically processed using several different unit operations including flotation, gravity, magnetic and electrostatic separation techniques. Two of the most important beneficiation techniques for RE minerals are gravity and magnetic separation. Many RE minerals are found alongside low specific gravity gangue minerals thereby permitting the use of gravity separations to concentrate the heavy value RE minerals. Magnetic separation is used primarily to remove ferromagnetic gangue minerals as well as to separate individual paramagnetic rare earth minerals.
This work investigated the use of a wet high intensity magnetic separation (WHIMS) in conjunction with gravity pre-concentration steps (Knelson and Falcon centrifugal concentrators) to beneficiate a rare earth ore. The results of these separation steps are related to the magnetic properties of RE minerals, based on literature and measurements conducted using a vibrating sample magnetometer (VSM).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-18
Number of pages10
JournalMinerals Engineering
Early online date15 Oct 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Rare Earth Minerals
  • Knelson Concentrator
  • Falcon Concentrator
  • vibrating sample magnetometer


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