Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Minerals Engineering report reflects the evolution of the global minerals industry

Hard at work with Dean Eastbury in Cape Town
During last week's conference in Cape Town, I got the chance to review the latest report on Minerals Engineering, with Elsevier's Executive Publisher Dean Eastbury, who looks after not only Minerals Engineering, but International Journal of Mineral Processing and Hydrometallurgy, the three journals in our field with the highest impact factors.
Impact Factor trends
This was an end of year report, an update on that reported in the posting of 6th August, which had great news of the journal's Author Feedback Programme, and the statistics in the report reflect the great demographic changes that are taking place in the minerals industry.
With Pablo Brito-Parada and Dean Eastbury
The flow of papers to the journal is steadily increasing, one of the reasons why we recently appointed Dr. Pablo Brito-Parada as Associate Editor, but the rejection rate has increased from 63% in 2013 to 67% this year. Australia provides by far the most accepted papers, followed by Canada and China, Australia also showing the largest increase in papers, while papers from South Africa show the largest decrease, possibly due to the current state of the mining industry in that country (posting of 25th June). Similarly paper flow from the UK is on the wane.
It is interesting that Australia has the lowest rejection rate (15%) of all submitted papers, while China has one of the highest rejections rates of 89%. Chinese authors submit more papers to the journal than any other country by a huge margin, around 32%, so contribute in a big way to the journal's overall rejection rate. Not so long ago, at the IMPC in Beijing, Minerals Engineering and IJMP were involved in a workshop for Chinese authors, but it is apparent that lessons have not been learned, and before submitting papers I would strongly urge authors to read the Guide to Authors carefully, and to ensure that there is innovative work in their manuscripts and that they are relevant not only to a specific ore or material.
ScienceDirect downloads continue to astound me, and these are also on the increase, with well over 460,000 by early October of this year, compared with over 430,000 in 2013. China contributes around 25% of the downloads, and shows the highest rate of increase, again highlighting the ever increasing importance of this country to the worldwide minerals industry. At last months IMPC in Chile, it was reported that there are now 33 Universities and colleges teaching mineral processing in China, and more than 20 research institutes dedicated to mineral processing, with the largest number of students, teachers and researchers in the world, whereas most of the minerals engineering programmes in western universities have died or are dying.

Chinese delegates at the IMPC in Santiago last month
The world of minerals is changing rapidly, and it will be interesting to see how the evolution is reflected in next year's journal report.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Precious Metals '15 and Nickel Processing '15: abstracts due by the end of the week

A final reminder that if you wish to present papers at Precious Metals '15 and Nickel Processing '15, which will run back to back in Falmouth in May, short abstracts must be submitted by the end of  this week.

As always, papers presented will be considered for special issues of Minerals Engineering.

Custom House Quay, Falmouth

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Farewell to a stunning city

It's always difficult to tear yourself away from Cape Town, but a great week at Process Mineralogy is now at an end. Jon and Amanda left last night for London, and Barbara and I leave the Vineyard today for Johannesburg and then on to Reunion Island for a week's holiday.

Yesterday Jon, Amanda, Dean Eastbury and I spent a few hours hiking the Table Mountain contour path, between the impressive Cecil John Rhodes memorial and Kirstenbosch Gardens.

We will be back of course- next November for Flotation '15.

At Rhodes Memorial
Climbing up to the contour path

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Hiking Table Mountain with Process Mineralogy '14 delegates

Unfortunately gale force winds forced us to abandon the hike to the top of Table Mountain today. However, Jon and I did manage a short hike with 10 of the Process Mineralogy '14 delegates. We climbed up to the Table Mountain contour path via the Platteklip Gorge trail, and walked the relatively short stretch to the lower cable way.

Process Mineralogy '14: The Movie

The atmosphere of Process Mineralogy '14 is, I hope, captured in this 7 minute video.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Process Mineralogy '14: Final Day

The last technical session of the conference contained a number of case studies involving mineralogical characterisation to optimise processing of various ores. Following lunch there was an interesting panel discussion on the future of process mineralogy, which I shall report on at a later date. Amanda then closed the conference and invited delegates to attend Process Mineralogy '17, in March 2017. She thanked the sponsors once more for what has been a fine event, before we all enjoyed the late afternoon sunshine in the Vineyard gardens for a farewell wine function.

The Vineyard is a superb venue and I would like to take the opportunity of thanking the friendly and very professional staff, pictured below, who in no small way contribute to the success of MEI Conferences in Cape Town.