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Mining Innovation Hub in WA a step closer

An industry-led technology Mining Innovation Hub in Kalgoorlie-Boulder is a step closer after all parties engaged in the consultation phase showed overwhelming support for the Hub concept.

This article was published in CRC ORE News - June 2017

Mining Innovation Hub in WA a step closer

By Clytie Dangar, General Manager – Stakeholder Engagement

WA Mining Innovation Hub Breakfast Clytie Dangar Luke Keeney CRC ORE 2017Clytie Dangar and Luke Keeney of CRC ORE presenting the Hub concept to a group of interested stakeholders at a leader’s breakfast during Austmine. Photo supplied by Abigail Endersby Western Australian Department of State Development.In June 2016, CRC ORE commissioned an initial study to be undertaken by CRC ORE and Curtin University’s WA School of Mines (WASM). The comprehensive study assessed the potential for creating an industry-led technology innovation hub in Kalgoorlie-Boulder.

The project team set out on a planned consultation process with industry representatives and other stakeholders over the next six months.

Having completed the pre-feasibility phase of the project, work now moves to a more detailed study phase with deeper engagement with industry and other stakeholders. This is scheduled to be completed in the coming months.

A breakfast was held during the recent Austmine 17 conference in Perth on 24 May to promote the initial Hub concept. Sponsored by CRC ORE, Curtin University and MRIWA, it was attended by a range of researchers, regional mining company and METS representatives along with other government representatives. There was significant interest in and broad support for the concept. CRC ORE has since fielded several expressions of interest from people wanting to learn more and get involved.

Several interesting research project opportunities have already been identified for the Hub. These are now being scoped, with involvement from several local mining companies, METS companies and researchers. A number of PhD student projects are also being considered as part of the new Hub.

It is intended that the Hub will provide an avenue for the potential development of multiple research and innovative projects, not just those originating from the work of CRC ORE or its primary collaborative partners.

While more work needs to be done to move the project from concept to reality, early feedback and interest is indicating the development of a Mining Innovation Hub in Kalgoorlie-Boulder has merit. It could be another important step in establishing Kalgoorlie-Boulder as a centre of excellence in mining technology development and transfer. The long-term vision is creating a centre for METS and Researchers to embed their technologies with a clear pathway to utilisation in the region, in Australia and ultimately internationally.

 

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