HELICAL SEPARATOR (EN: spiral separator, screw separator; DE: Schraubenscheider; FR: separateur à vis; ES: separador espiral; RU: винтовой сепаратор) is the apparatus in the form of the helical trough, which has been installed vertically, for the gravitational beneficiation. The slurry is delivered into the upper part of the trough (see the Figure), and flows down under the action of the force of gravity. The distribution of the particles of the slurry mostly ends at the second or third turn, where are installed the separators for the partial extraction of the beneficiated material. The waste rock is unloaded at the end of the trough.
The diameter of the helical separator (depending on the performance, according to the content of the solids, size, and density of the material, which is separated) is within the limits of 600-1200 millimetres; the quantity of the turns is 3-6, the relative pitch (the ratio of the pitch to the diameter) is 0.4-0.6. The maximal particle size of the particles of the waste rock within the slurry is up to 12-16 millimetres, the desired size of the particles of the valuable minerals is 0.074-4 millimetres. The extraction of these particles into the concentrate amounts to 90-97%, while the degree of the reduction (the ratio of the mass of the beneficiated material to the mass of the source raw material) is 5-10. The content of the solids within the slurry is 15-25%. The performance of the helical separator in terms of the solids is 1-12 cubic metres per hour on average (depending on the character of the material, which is beneficiated).
They produce the helical separator with the regulated (of the sheet steel, and aluminium alloys), and unregulated (of the iron casting, or steel casting, and aluminum alloys) pitch of the turns. The helical sluices are one of the types of the helical separators.
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