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Research Areas

Process Mineralogy

Background

Process Mineralogy is a relatively new cross disciplinary research area that has grown out of applied mineralogy and bridges minerals beneficiation and mineralogy:

Mineralogy - the scientific study of minerals

Process mineralogy - practical study of minerals associated with the processing of ores, concentrates and smelter products for the development and optimisation of metallurgical flow sheets

The Process Mineralogy group in the CMR is currently run by Dr Megan Becker. It was initiated in 2005 and since then has been active in numerous research projects focusing on different aspects of mineral processing and has also developed a process mineralogy course for industry. The group has good collaborations both within the Department of Chemical Engineering (through the Minerals to Metals Initiative), as well as globally - including a strong collaboration with Prof Dee Bradshaw from the Sustainable Minerals Institute at the University of Queensland who originally founded the process mineralogy group at UCT.

Key analytical tools used in process mineralogy studies include optical microscopy, quantitative XRD, QEMSCAN, MLA and X-ray CT (through CAF at Stellenbosch University, South Africa).

Objectives

Establish a working group with the ability to mineralogically characterise ores from a fundamental level and apply this information within a broader perspective towards the understanding and prediction of the behaviour of these minerals in the liberation, separation and disposal processes.

Current Projects

For more information please click here.