Friday, 26 September 2014

Memories of Minerals Engineering '94

Twenty years ago today Minerals Engineering '94 began at the Hyatt Regency Resort, Incline Village, Lake Tahoe, Nevada. It was the 4th in the series of conferences organised by CSM Associates Ltd and Minerals Engineering journal, and was attended by 80 delegates from 23 countries, some of whom are sadly no longer with us, some who are still familiar faces at MEI Conferences, and others who have just slipped under the radar.
Lake Tahoe, USA
The nearby University of Nevada Reno collaborated with us, and the wonderful Lake Tahoe venue was suggested to us by the late Prof. Ross Smith of the Mackay School of Mines at Reno.
The mining industry was in one of its regular periods of crisis in the mid-90s, with primary mining under great pressure, notably from environmentalists. The perception that mining is a source of pollution in every form was inhibiting the development of mining in the Western world to such an extent that it had been suggested at the previous year's SME that a future ban on all mining activities in the USA, apart from coal, could be envisaged. In Europe opportunities in primary mining were mostly in the east, particularly in the old Soviet Union, where environmental legislation was not so intense.
It was felt that primary mining was unlikely to satisfy the increasing demand for minerals, and that there would be an increasing need from minerals from secondary sources, where the physical, chemical and biological techniques can be used to extract metals and minerals from polluting wastes, despoiled land, industrial and domestic waste etc. This has certainly proven to be the case, and was the reason for MEI instigating our sustainability conferences (see posting of 14th July 2014).
Hazen Research, Inc., a company with a high international profile on the environmental scene, sponsored the conference, and the first keynote lecture at the event "Minerals Engineering in the Environmental and Recycling Industries" was given by Erik Spiller, the then Vice President of Hazen Research and President of A.R. MacPherson Consultants, a joint venture of Hazen Research and Lakefield Research.
Forty seven papers were presented and selected papers were published in Vol. 8 Nos. 1/2 and Vol. 8 Nos. 4/5 of Minerals Engineering in 1995.
A few photos from Minerals Engineering '94 are shown below.
With delegates from Japan

With Ryan Jones of Knelson Concentrators

In Virginia City, Nevada

Conference dinner with Gulhan Ozbayoglu and Ted Bearman

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