Frothers & Froth Flotation
The importance of frothers in mineral flotation is widely acknowledged in the mining industry. Frothers perform the following key functions in the froth flotation process:
- Reduce surface tension of the liquid-gas interface to enable froth formation
- Hinder coalescence in order to stabilize bubble size
- Facilitate hydrophobic particle adhesion to air bubbles.
Frother chemicals are usually heteropolar surface-active organic surfactants with properly balanced hydrophile-lipophile properties, having branched hydrocarbon radicals and forming loosely packed gaseous films at the liquid/gas interface.