How does a Magnetic Separator Work?

Magnetic separators are often used for industrial purposes. However, they can be used in a wide variety of applications, which you will get to know in this article.

Read on to learn about these powerful devices as well as understand how they work.

A large magnetic separator

What is Magnetic Separation?

Magnetic separation is the process where impurities and other magnetically susceptible materials are removed from a mixture with the use of a magnet. This process takes advantage of differences in the magnetic properties of minerals, which can either be of the following:

  • Ferromagnetic — These are magnetic minerals like magnetite and pyrrhotite. Extracting these minerals from a mineral mixture can be quickly done with a magnet since they will stick to the magnet’s poles.
  • Paramagnetic minerals, on the other hand, are weakly attracted into a magnetic field. Thus, when exposed to a magnetic field, they are pulled into it, and they can be separated.
  • Diamagnetic minerals act the opposite of paramagnetic minerals since they weakly repel magnetic fields. Thus, if exposed to a magnet, it will be repelled from the area and maybe separated.

This separation technique is advantageous in iron mining as iron is attracted to a magnet. Moreover, this process is considered one of the most reliable ways to extract ferrous metals during raw materials processing. It can also be used in the production of finished products such as automotive parts or sheet metal production for the construction industry.

Check out the video below for a quick demonstration of a magnetic separator in action:

Video by Douglas Manufacturing

What is a magnetic separator?

Magnetic separators are powerful and portable devices used in magnetic separation and can be used throughout the manufacturing process. It can also be adjusted to attract different types of magnetic materials at different intensity levels, whether from liquid or solid mixtures. However, they are more effective when used in a liquid but still works great in removing solid impurities. They can either be ferromagnetic or paramagnetic and can vary in size ranging from a table version up to a huge, heavy drum type used in recycling and other manufacturing processes. These devices are very versatile and have straightforward designs. In fact, you can build a basic magnetic separator at home at any time by using a powerful magnet like neodymium magnets and a clamp to hold the material down.

As mentioned earlier, magnetic separators can be used for a wide array of purposes. Some of these purposes are as follows:

  • Waste plants.
  • Chemical production plants.
  • Handling equipment, conveyor belts.
  • Liquid treatment plants.
  • Recycling.
  • Agricultural machines
  • Aggregate mining
  • Food Processing
  • Textile Manufacturing
  • Pharmaceutical and Chemical Industries
  • Wood Processing
  • Pallet Recycling
  • Tire Recycling

Types of Magnetic Separators

Magnetic separators come in different types which are as follows:

  • Magnetic Chutes
  • Magnetic Clarifiers
  • Magnetic Cyclones
  • Magnetic Decanters
  • Magnetic Dedusters
  • Magnetic Deferrizers
  • Magnetic Drums
  • Magnetic Elutriators
  • Magnetic Extractors
  • Magnetic Flotation Cells
  • Magnetic Grates
  • Magnetic Gravity Separators
  • Magnetic Grids
  • Magnetic Humps
  • Magnetic Pulleys
  • Magnetic Rods
  • Magnetic Sieve Shakers
  • Magnetic Sieves
  • Magnetic Strainers
  • Magnetic Thickeners
  • Magnetic Tramp Metal Removers

How is a magnetic separator used?

A magnetic separator is made up of a powerful magnet that is either placed or suspended from a ceiling or device. If a tabletop magnetic separator is used, materials or mixtures can simply be passed over it.

On the other hand, suspended magnetic separators are often hung over the mixture or material to remove magnetically susceptible impurities from it.

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