Theoretical principles of jigging were laid by German scientist P. Rittinger. Peter Fon Rittinger (1811-1872) – Austrian mining engineer made some inventions in mining, for example, a drum for ore washing, etc., which were widely used.
Mayer's potential energy theory is one of the most widely accepted theories describing jigging. While it represented a substantial contribution to jig theory, the potential energy theory can not be applied directly to describe real jigging operations. A modification to that theory has been made recently and is called the dispersion model of jigging. That model, however, is limited to describing jigging of particles of uniform size.
A procedure that uses the Monte Carlo technique and Mayer's principle has been developed, and is used to simulate jigging of particulate mixtures of variable size and density. It is demonstrated that for the case of monosize feeds with variable densities the simulation procedure provides results identical to those from the dispersion model. Further, in the case of binary-sized feeds, it is shown that a layer of fines accumulates in the top of the bed, while a greater proportion of coarse material is observed in the bottom of the bed.
Soviet scientists N.N. Vinogradov and E.E. Rafales-Lamarka ( the 60-th of 20-th century) considered jigging as a mass process in which not only strictly determinated factors act, but casual factors also.
Jigging is dealing with washing natural resources in wide range of size – from 0.1 ( alluvial ores) up to 250 mm ( anthtracites), and also different density – from 1400 ( coals) up to 15.000-19 000 kg/m3 ( gold and platinum). In the flowsheet of preparation plants jigging sometimes is a major method of preparation, but frequently it is combined with other methods.
Due to high specific capacity, small energy consumption, simplicity of applied equipment and comparatively high precision of separation, conceding on this factor only to heavy medium separation, jigging is referred to the most saving methods of preparation, especially in preparation of coals and ores of ferrous metals with large impregnationof useful components not requiring fine crushing.