Laser-based online analysis of minerals

Summary: At the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology, a laser method for determination of the composition of minerals was developed that can be used for the fast online analysis of a wide range of raw materials. At a limestone quarry, this method was ­applied to demonstrate the generation of a deposit model based on online analysis already during drilling. The non-contact multi-element analysis with which a direct sorting criterion can be determined, also facilitates automatic and economic single-particle sorting of rocks and ores. On a demonstration rig, an efficient reduction of the MgO content of limestone production samples could be ­realized.

1 Introduction

To ensure efficient exploitation of natural raw material deposits and their high-quality processing, many deposits, in particular those which are inhomogeneous with a complex structure require both precise mapping of the deposit as well as sorting of the extracted raw materials.The sorting processes used in the processing of minerals separate the material to be sorted based on a sorting criterion, which only indirectly correlates with the chemical composition of the material. For example, ores are separated according to their density or their surface wettability. For sorting that...

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