Ruijing Xu, Wenjie Zou, Bo Rao, Wei Zhao, Ting Wang, and Zhijun Zhang, In situ kinetics and flocs conformation studies of kaolinite flocculated by Chi-g-CPAM, Int. J. Miner. Metall. Mater., 30(2023), No. 5, pp. 813-823.
Cite this article as:
Ruijing Xu, Wenjie Zou, Bo Rao, Wei Zhao, Ting Wang, and Zhijun Zhang, In situ kinetics and flocs conformation studies of kaolinite flocculated by Chi-g-CPAM, Int. J. Miner. Metall. Mater., 30(2023), No. 5, pp. 813-823.
Research Article

In situ kinetics and flocs conformation studies of kaolinite flocculated by Chi-g-CPAM

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  • Corresponding author:

    Wenjie Zou    E-mail:

  • Received: 22 April 2022Revised: 29 June 2022Accepted: 30 June 2022Available online: 2 July 2022
  • This study presents a comparative study of the flocculation behavior of kaolinite induced by chitosan-graft-poly(acrylamide-dimethyl diallyl ammonium chloride) (Chi-g-CPAM) and a commercial cationic polyacrylamide (CPAM). The flocculation behaviour was characterised in terms of both flocculation kinetics and the corresponding morphology changes during flocculation. Both Chi-g-CPAM and CPAM were grafted from silica wafers by means of atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). The quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCM-D) tests were conducted. The equilibrium time flocculated by Chi-g-CPAM was found to be 0.46 times as that of CPAM, together with a larger total mass of kaolinite layer. The flocculation behaviour by Chi-g-CPAM can be well captured by a pseudo-first-order model. In contrast, the presence of CPAM leads to a more complex kinetics. A relatively larger fitting slope (0.4663) was obtained at the initial stage but the fitting slope droped to 0.2026 after 800 min, indicating a densification process caused by CPAM. The flocculation kinetics of CPAM can be captured by the Elovich model for the inital stage but the combination of pseudo-first-order and pseudo-second-order models for the latter stages, which can be attributed to the long chain of CPAM. With a dosage of 75 g/t, the settling test with Chi-g-CPAM exhibits the same turbidity in the supernatant but a smaller layer thickness of the settlement compared to CPAM. The study enables a better understanding of the flocculation behavior and contributes to the development of efficient flocculants in mineral processing and tailings treatment.
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