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SAG 2001: The Third International Conference on Autogenous and Semiautogenous Grinding Technology
Andy Mular and his team deserve the highest praise for organising an exceptional conference. Few conferences have succeeded in attracting such a wide range of delegates to focus in a gruelling programme on such a specific field. A significant reason for the success of this conference is the quality of the two previous SAG conferences; another factor is Andy's very conscious insistence that this is an operators conference, and he has succeeded in delivering on this emphasis while attracting the more academic contributors as well.
The conference was held in the Renaissance Vancouver Hotel from Sunday 30th September and ending with the Conference Banquet on the evening of Wednesday October 3rd. It started with a bang with a Session on Discrete Element Modelling of milling: eleven papers displaying the latest results of the worldwide bunch of enthusiasts on the DEM bandwagon, applying their versatile tool to milling. The other major foci of sessions were Mill Control, Sensors (focussed on the measurement of load behaviour in SAG mills), Modelling, Case Studies in Plant Design and Optimisation, some papers on ore body characterisation, crushers, high-pressure grinding rolls, pebble and dry grinding, Feed Preparation, downstream effects, Mechanical Design ("How Big Is Big?"), Liner design and wear, and Ore Characterisation.
Andy's team laid on a punishing programme. Not for us several tea breaks and evenings off! Time for excellent meals funded by the conference was grudgingly allowed. The only way you got time off was to skip some sessions. Each evening was devoted to a roundtable session dealing with particular topics; these started while you were trying to finish your coffee at 6:30 pm and went on until about 10pm. Most delegates took to these arrangements with masochistic relish, and session chariman had difficulty closing the sessions, even at 10pm.
The Conference closed with the Banquet on Wednesday evening where High Flyer Awards were presented. The Candadian Mineral Processors division of the CIM also took the opportunity to honour Andy Mular as the first recipient of the MacPherson Award for his significant contribution to the advancement of comminution.
M.H. Moys, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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