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Platinum 2012 - Spotlight

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The SAIMM convenes a platinum conference, around a theme, every two years. Previous themes have been ʻPlatinum Adding Valueʼ in 2004, ʻPlatinum Surges Aheadʼ in 2006, ʻPlatinum in Transformationʼ in 2008, and ʻPlatinum in Transition – Boom or Bustʼ in
2010. With increasing industrymaturity it was felt that an appropriate theme for 2012 was platinum as a ʻCatalyst for Changeʼ.

The conference was a high-quality event with an overwhelming vote of support and positive response from the many delegates that I engaged with. I was pleasantly surprised with the attendance, given the current disrupted state of the industry.

SAIMM President's Message

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I
had the privilege of attending the 2013 Mining Indaba in Cape Town in January. I say privilege because, as the event has grown in stature over the years so has the cost of being there. Despite the cost, attendance was excellent with a range of local and global industry participants. However, I felt an uncomfortable sense of disconnect between the fundamental shift in operating context that the South African industry is undergoing and the sense of 'business as usual' in the exhibitors' hall.

Wits Mining retains ECSA accreditation

While continuing to draw increasing student numbers, the School of Mining Engineering at the University of the
Witwatersrand (‘Wits’) is maintaining standards high as it retains its accreditation from the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA).

Manganese Ferroalloy Production

The School on the Production of Manganese Ferroalloys was held at Misty Hills, Muldersdrift on 12 and 13 June 2012. The main attraction was lectures presented by Professor Merete Tangstad from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). Her fields of research at NTNU include manganese ferroalloy production, and she co-authored the definitive textbook, Production of Manganese Ferroalloys, with Sverre Olsen and Tor Lindstand in 2007.

New engineering library to boost mining skills

Johannesburg, 7 November 2012 - Gold Fields Limited (Gold Fields) and the University of the Witwatersrand officially opened the Gold Fields Engineering Library at the Wits Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment on 7 November 2012.

The Gold Fields Engineering Library, located in the Chamber of Mines building on Wits’ Braamfontein campus, provides modern and innovative facilities for undergraduate and postgraduate engineering students, academics, and researchers. As part of the refurbishment of the Chamber of Mines building, the library was relocated to the ground floor to make it more accessible to students.

Mining Indaba™ invests in the future of South Africa’s education

In line with its agenda of aligning with the transformative policies of the South African government and of contributing to the advancement of the country’s mining industry, Investing in African Mining Indaba™ has offered bursaries to two deserving third-year mining engineering students. The bursaries are valued at US$10 000 each, and have been offered to Lindiwe Nyalunga at the University of the Witwatersrand and Hlulisani Mabege at the University of Pretoria.

Meeting of International Mining and Metallurgical Societies

A meeting of several leading international mining and metallurgical societies was held in conjunction with the MINExpo International exhibition in Las Vegas, Nevada on 23 September 2012. The meeting was attended by representatives of AusIMM (Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy), CIM (Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum), SAIMM (Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy), and SME (Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration).

Spotlight - International Percolation Leaching Conference and Short Course

The on heap leaching, dealing firstly with the geomechanics and hydrodynamics of crushed ore beds, criteria for satisfactory operation, and in-heap measurements, led by Amado Guzman, an internationally recognized authority in hydrology. The second theme for the day was reaction and mass transport and mathematical modelling, led by Jochen Petersen, associate professor at the University of Cape Town.

Outotec and Western Cape Branch

Outotec is seeking to promote sustainable minerals processing in southern Africa. As a company, selling technology, sophisticated equipment, and plant solutions for minerals, metals, and water processing as well as energy recovery, the company also wishes to inspire the abundant young South African talent to innovate. With this in mind, Outotec has committed funds to the Western Cape Branch as a prize and travel grant. They believe this will showcase the importance of expertise in sustainability, an area that Outotec is passionate about, reflected in their mission statement: ‘Sustainable use of Earth’s natural resources’. Outotec has recognized the value derived from the Western Cape Branch’s focus on tertiary education, and asked the Branch to handle these awards.

Pretoria Branch SAIMM Technical Evening

26 September 2012, University of Pretoria. The SAIMM Pretoria Branch’s monthly technical evening was hosted by ESCO at the University of Pretoria. The evening was well supported with some 55 delegates attending. The topic of the presentation by Terry Briscoe was the evolution of the ESCO Dragline Bucket. Terry, Senior Engineer Technology Development, has been with ESCO for 42 years and will be retiring towards the end of the year. Norman Murison, the Services Manager South Africa, first gave a short overview of the ESCO company, then Terry covered the models applied in the design of dragline buckets and case studies were discussed.

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Other mining news

Mining Weekly | Africa

The latest mining world news and project information from Africa. providing updates on the progress of future, new and existing projects. Developments in mining legislation, policies, investments and infrastructure will be highlighted
  • Liberia sees $800m ArcelorMittal investment this year
    Liberia’s government expects talks with ArcelorMittal to yield an agreement to invest $800-million in the West African nation, President George Weah said. Talks with the steelmaker about amending a so-called Mineral Development Agreement have made “significant progress,” Weah said in an address to the nation Monday in the capital, Monrovia. Changes to the accord will pave the way for the construction of a “value-addition concentrator plant,” he said. The new project being considered by the company will triple the amount of iron-ore Liberia exports.
  • Lion moves closer to restarting graphite production in Madagascar
    Mineral exploration and development company Global Li-Ion Graphite (Lion) is moving closer to restarting graphite production in Madagascar, where it owns the Ambato-Arana project. The Vancouver-based company said this week that it aimed to restart graphite production during the course of 2021.
  • Rainbow enhances senior project development team
    Aim-listed Rainbow Rare Earths has appointed Chris le Roux as lead process consultant and Charles Graham as lead project manager. Le Roux is a process engineer, with significant experience and an in-depth knowledge of numerous technical processing operations, the company noted.
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