Thursday, 18 September 2014

Tuesday at MEC 2014

Amanda sends this report on Day 2 of the Minerals Engineering Conference in Istebna, Poland:

Today the conference ramped up a gear, with parallel technical sessions running all day. The morning saw two sessions on mineral processing, one on hydrometallugy and one focusing on the physicochemical aspects of mineral processing, while the afternoon focused on new challenges in mineral processing and more physicochemical aspects of mineral processing.

Some delegates also found time for meetings whilst enjoying the magnificent views. Prof Tadeusz Tumidajski, Dr Tomasz Niedoba, and Dr Barbara Tora of AGH University, Bozena Spalinska of KGHM, and Dr Bozena Skorupska and Dr Andrzej Wieniewski of the Institute of Non-Ferrous Metals are working together to develop a project concerning the development of a monitoring system for hydrocyclones at KGHM.

Prof Tadeusz Tumidajski, Dr Tomasz Niedoba, Dr Barbara Tora, Bozena Spalinska,
Dr Bozena Skorupska and Dr Andrzej Wieniewski

Of course, all work and no play is no fun at all, so after the morning's coffee break I teamed up with Zhihai Luo for a walk to the top of the mountain, as I'd promised myself I'd do yesterday. With the temperature reaching 28C it was a sweaty walk, but the views from the top were worth it!

Looking back down to the Zargon Complex
I spent lunch with a group from Wroclaw University of Technology; Dr Danuta Szyszka, Dr Alicja Bakalarz and and PhD student Magdalena Duchnowska. As well as being an Assistant Professor at the University, Danuta is also the editor of the journal Mining Science. All three told me that they were looking forward to attending the International Mineral Processing Congress in Chile next month, which Barry will also be attending in MEI's role as media partner.

Lunch in the Zargon Complex with Dr Danuta Szyszka (right)
Przemyslaw Kowalczuk and Amos Ambo reunited
Immediately after lunch, the weather changed quite dramatically, with thunder, lightning, a heavy downpour of rain, and even some hail! Whilst trapped under a large umbrella, I chatted with Amos Ambo and Dr Przemyslaw Kowalczuk of Wroclaw University of Tecnology. The two are old friends, from when Przemyslaw spent 6 months working as a research assistant at the Camborne School of Mines in 2012.

I decided to sit in on a session on the physicochemical aspects of mineral processing. First up was Anna Latowska, of Gdansk University of Technology. PhD student Anna presented “Micellar aggregation of Triton X-100 surfactant in imidazolium ionic liquids”.

Anna was followed by Prof El-Sayad Ali Abdel-Aal, of the Central Metallurgical Research and Development Institute in Egypt, who presented “Enhancing filtration rate of New Valley oxidised phosphate concentrate with some additives”. Then Shekwonyadu Iyakwari, a PhD student from the Camborne School of Mines, University of Exeter, presented “Strategy development for copper preconcentration using near infra-red sensors”.

Last up before coffee was Katarzyna Kiegel, of the Institute of Nuclear Chemistry and Technology in Poland. Katarzyna presented “ Analysis of the possibility of uranium supply from domestic resources”.

With half an hour for coffee, I crossed over to the other conference room for the 'New Challenges of Mineral Processing' session. There, I spoke to the group from Aalto University in Finland, Prof Olof Forsen with 3 of his PhD students: Lotta Rintala, Anna Stefanova and Antii Kekki.

Olof Forsen, Hylke Glass, Antii Kekki, Anna Stefanova and Kwang-Suk You
Lotta then went on to present an interesting paper on “Experimental work as a knowledge source in the gold ore process design”, concluding that published experiments can be used as knowledge sources in gold ore process design recommendations. She was followed by another PhD student, Zhihai Luo, who presented “The role of mineral processing in mine closure planning”, which focused on work carried out in the Carnon Valley, Cornwall, where I often go cycling! Copper, tin and arsenic were mined here and a lot of heavy metals have accumulated in the area.

Zhihai Luo

Lotta Rintala
To finish the days technical proceedings, Dr Tomasz Chmielewski, of Wroclaw University of Science and Technology, presented “Recovery of cobalt and nickel in atmospheric leaching of flotation sulfide concentrate from Lubin concentrator”.

Jan Miller, Amanda Wills, El-Sayed Ali Abdel-Aal, Olof Forsen, Jan Drzymala, Pawal Nowak
This evening the organisers laid on a BBQ of traditional Silesian food, with Polish beers on tap.

With conference organisers, Marcin Kutynski
and Tomasz Suponik




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