Courses such as advanced mineral processing and geometallurgy are the focus this semester and the theoretical lectures are mixed with experimental work and industry-related projects. The students are also given the opportunity to visit different mines and smelters for a one week long field trip, which this year was carried out in the Northern part of Sweden.
"As the students represents all parts of the world, often with their own experience from the mine industry, such as South America, Asia and US is it very inspiring when we are discussing geometallurgy in a global perspective. When we have been visiting the mines and the students points out how clean it is and how well occupational safety is handled; it has given me an eye-opener", says Cecilia Lund, Associate Senior Lecturer and also responsible for the Master program at LTU.
EMerald is a two year Erasmus Mundus Master program in Georesources Engineering, focusing on the following major aspects: geometallurgy and mineral processing of primary ore resources and it is unique in the whole of Europe. The Master students arrive to LTU for their third semester after being in Liège and Nancy. A fourth of the cohort will then stay in Luleå and conduct the Master thesis work to receive a Master of Science in Geosciences.
"What we can offer the students in comparison to our European colleges in the program is the close vicinity to the real mine industry. This also means that the content in our courses is directly related to the industry. The last semester of the program the students will do their Master Thesis work, and it is for us natural that the projects are conducted in close collaboration with the mining companies. In addition, it gives the students a possibility to establish their own professional network", says Cecilia Lund.
Three guest researcher Edson Charikinya, Lucy Little and Warren Little from University of Cape Town (UCT), South Africa are visiting LTU this autumn for participate in teaching and supervision of the EMerald students.
"Within the Emerald program it is possible to invite international senior researchers to bring their experience to the education. Since the area of geometallurgy covers the whole value chain of the mineral and mine business it is therefore important to give the students all aspects of it. This year our colleagues, in addition to the teaching activities, contribute with foremost research when it comes to process mineralogy, comminution and X-ray tomography", says Cecilia Lund
It is also the third year in a row that we can invite colleagues from South Africa as we have a close and good collaboration with UCT since earlier. For several years now we have had the opportunity to send our own program students for exchanges studies and many of them have done an excellent work. For example one paper has been published in the journal of Minerals Engineering is an outcome from such an exchange.
"Since both Sweden and South Africa are leading mining nations, we share similar knowledge and experience when it comes to mining related research, and our collaboration works very well. When we discuss state of art in our research we do not need to start to explain how the mining industry works. This autumn have been a perfect opportunity for both of us to discuss additional joint research projects", concludes Cecilia Lund