The sustainable production of valuable minerals and metals from ore (or metal-containing waste material) is critical for a prosperous and safe world. Ore is typically a complex raw material, requiring a wide variety of treatment processes (physical and chemical) in intricate flowsheets to unlock valuable minerals and metals. Extractive metallurgy encompasses the fundamental concepts and application of such treatment processes.
Key challenges in extractive metallurgy include changing raw material characteristics (e.g. diminishing mineral/metal content as easy-to-access ore bodies are depleted); energy use minimization (to minimize carbon footprint); water use minimization (to reduce impact on scarce natural resources); as well as effectively dealing with the emergent complex behaviour from intricate flowsheets and heterogenous, multiphase raw materials.
Important research areas in extractive metallurgy at the Department of Process Engineering include:
3. Physical processing
4. Surface chemistry
5. Flowsheet design
6. Monitoring for abnormal events, process control and economic optimization
The researchers listed below all form part of the Extractive Metallurgy group. Follow the link to their individual profiles to find out more about their research interests and activities.