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8 October 2015

Exploring new, safe and cost-effective methods in mining

A new Australian Research Council (ARC) Research Hub focused on maximum extraction of our rich copper resources has officially launched its research programme in South Australia today.

The ARC Research Hub for Australian Copper-Uranium was officially launched by Chief Executive Officer of the ARC, Professor Aidan Byrne, at The University of Adelaide. Professor Byrne officiated at the event on behalf of the Minister for Education and Training.

The research hub will develop, test and commercialise new, safe and cost-effective methods to separate radionuclides from copper concentrates derived from copper-uranium ores.

“The ore in some copper mining areas can contain uranium and related elements, which may reduce the quality and value of the copper product,” said Professor Byrne.

“This Research Hub will focus on harnessing the expertise and facilities of some of Australia’s key resource companies and universities, to enable Australia to position itself as a world leader in copper production and associated technology.

“The outcomes of this hub will assist the global minerals industry by helping to produce purer and cleaner copper concentrates more cost-effectively, and with higher market value.

“Australian mining services that rely on this industry will also benefit via the production of new, economically sustainable technologies that will be adopted locally and exported internationally."

The ARC Research Hub for Australian Copper-Uranium is receiving $2.5 million (over five years) through the ARC’s Industrial Transformation Research Programme.

Researchers based at The University of Adelaide will work closely with partners including: BHP Billiton Olympic Dam; University College London; the Defence Science and Technology Organisation; The University of Queensland; Monash University; and The Flinders University of South Australia. 

For more information about this research hub, please visit The University of Adelaide website. For more information about the ARC and its grant schemes visit the ARC website.

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