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MEI Online: General Minerals Engineering: Conference Reports: Mineral Processing '04

 
    

Mineral Processing '04
Cape Town, South Africa, August 5-6, 2004

The annual conference organised by the Western Cape Branch of the SAIMM was back to its familiar form after making way for the excitement of hosting the International Mineral Processing Congress in Cape Town in 2003. This year’s event was the 22nd in the series organised in conjunction with the local tertiary institutions and was held at the Lord Charles Hotel on the 5-6 August 2004. The range of themes included the traditional areas such as Bio- and Hydrometallurgy, Physical Separation, Pyrometallurgy, Control, Comminution and Flotation with new sessions and themes such as Metal Accounting. The event showcased both National and International speakers with a mix of presenters and delegates from industrial operations, design companies and research and technical institutions. Notable was the participation from an Indian delegation and the strong Australian contingent who seem to be extending and consolidating strong links.

The first keynote address was given by Dr Francis Petersen, of Mintek entitled ‘Maximising the PGM value matrix towards a strategic economic advantage for South Africa’ and was motivating and encouraging for all those involved in the Industry. Particularly challenging and inspiring was the second keynote ‘Biocatalysts for the future: Designed by evolution’ by Dr Frances Arnold visiting from California Institute of Technology. The topic of bio-catalysis was novel for many in the audience but may well be a taste of things to come.

This conference was initiated in the early eighties as a student conference and considerable effort continues to be made to showcase post graduate research, in particular by way of the poster snapshot and poster presentations. This year’s competition for the best poster was won by Sonny Mwasa with his poster entitled ‘Measuring particle segregation along SAG mills” where he discussed the findings of results obtained by crash stopping and sampling an industrial mill.

The conference was well supported with sponsorship from Anglo American, Anglo Platinum, Anglogold Ashanti, Hatch and Outokumpu.

The conference was characterised by unusually high attendance at the sessions and the large number discussions and interactions at the breaks. Although the organisers believe this was entirely due to the quality of the conference, it should be noted that the timing of the conference coincided with the wettest days of this year’s Cape Winter and the Cape of Storms was living up to its name, making it difficult for delegates to go anywhere!

Dr. Dee Bradshaw, University of Cape Town. Email: db@chemeng.uct.ac.za

Photographs taken at the conference, organised by the Western Cape Branch of the SAIMM, and held at the Lord Charles Hotel, Somerset West, can be seen by clicking on the link below.

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