Tuesday, 2 March 2010

SME Annual Meeting, Phoenix, Tuesday

A feature of the SME is the bewildering array of parallel sessions, often attended by a very small audience. It is also frustrating. The sessions started yesterday afternoon, and among the parallel sessions were four conflicting and potentially interesting sessions:

Emerging Technologies in Industrial Minerals
HPGR and General Comminution
Secondary Processing
Separation Innovation and Novel Technology

I thought briefly about hopping from paper to paper, but then thought better of it and spent my time at the exhibition.

This morning I attended the prestigious Gaudin Lecture, which was established in 1975 in memory of Antoine Gaudin. The recipient of the award was Glenn Hoffman (near left in photo), President of Cardero Iron Ore Company.

Although no abstract was available, and the affiliation of the speaker was not published in the programme, the title of the talk "Truth and consequences: a prescription for innovation in the minerals industry" attracted a fairly large audience of mineral processors, most of whom were probably disappointed by the very narrow theme of the lecture, dealing with very specialised areas of iron ore processing. The only item of interest to me was that innovation skills can be learned, for instance by networking with people outside your own specialised field.

While waiting for the exhibition to open, I called in at the SME bookshop, where I met up with Sam Sutherland of ArrMaz Custom Chemicals, USA, who was just purchasing a copy of my book, which is on display. He is pictured here with Prof. Gregory Adel (left) of Virginia Tech.

Then on to the exibition, where I called at the large Metso stand, to meet Keith Ference, who deals with global marketing communications. He expressed great interest in MEI Conferences, and agreed to sponsor Comminution '10 next month, our 8th sponsor of this major event.

Then back to the hotel for some rest before the long journey home, which looks like being very long as BA phoned to inform me of a 2-hour flight delay.

Phoenix has been disapponting in many ways, but I am sure there will be a larger mineral processing contingent next year in Denver, where Jon and I will take advantage of the ideal mix of networking and skiing!

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