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MEI Online: Analytical Techniques & Applied Mineralogy: Latest News: July 9th 2010


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The Centre for Minerals Research at the University of Cape Town launched the latest addition, a QEMSCAN, to its array of research equipment, on Tuesday, 15 June.

The CMR QEMSCAN was kindly donated by Anglo Platinum at the beginning of 2010. The sample preparation equipment was funded by the University Equipment Committee. The QEMSCAN is housed in the Radiogenic Isotope Facility in the Department of Geological Sciences, and will be run by Dr Megan Becker of the CMR.

QEMSCAN (Quantitative Evaluation of Minerals by Scanning Electron Microscopy) is a mineral analysis system based on research pioneered by the CSIRO in Australia. It combines features found in other analytical instruments such as a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) or Electron Probe Micro Analyser (EPMA) into a next generation solution designed for automated analysis of minerals, rocks and metallurgical samples.

There are only a few QEMSCAN facilities in South Africa, and the addition of a QEMSCAN to UCT’s equipment inventory will certainly “strengthen our position as a global player...and train people in sought-after mineral analysis technology," said Professor Cyril O’Connor, Director of the CMR.

“To conduct world-class research we need world-class research facilities," said Professor Francis Petersen, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering. “What we’ve seen here today are the tools to achieve that."

“QEMSCAN will be used as a research tool for postgraduate students and as a research tool to industry," O’Connor added. “We will keep an eye on what happens at UCT and support the work done here," said Dr Neville Plint, Head of Research and Development at Anglo Platinum. “This is a good opportunity to breed a whole new breed of metallurgists."




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