Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
ESTRADA-RUIZ, R.H. and PEREZ-GARIBAY, R.. Neural networks to estimate bubble diameter and bubble size distribution of flotation froth surfaces. J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. [online]. 2009, vol.109, n.7, pp. 441-446. ISSN 2411-9717.
This work analyses a new approach to estimates bubble size distribution of froth surfaces using artificial neural networks (ANN). Also, the robustness of ANN to interpret images with illumination perturbations, produced by light problems or dirt attached to the window of the video camera is evaluated. The experimental work was carried out in a laboratory flotation column, instrumented with an image acquisition system. The images were processed making use of a perceptron model with a hidden layer, sigmoidal transfer function and unitary bias, and the ANN trained with a back propagation algorithm. The results of validation show that ANN are reliable for learning and producing generalized predictions of the froth mean bubble diameter and bubble size distribution, when the model is trained using a database that contains information on the illumination intensity.
Keywords : image analysis; neural networks; bubble diameter; bubble size distribution.