Mintek 75
A Celebration of Technology


Conference 4-5 June 2009
Presenters' abbreviated CVs

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Masud Abdellatif

Masud Abdellatif obtained his PhD in Metallurgical Engineering in 1991 from the University of Idaho, on the topic of reduction of magnetite ore in a cyclone reactor (patented). He carried out postgraduate work on the direct production of carbides and borides of zirconium and titanium from ilmenite and zircon before joining Mintek in 1993. His current position is Specialist: Metal Condensation. Masud is actively involved in the production of PWG zinc from metallurgical wastes by the Enviroplas Process, and played a direct role in the development of the Mintek thermal Magnesium Process. He has 21 journal publications, two patents, and over 35 Mintek external and internal reports.

NicBarcza (11K)

Nic Barcza

Nic Barcza studied Metallurgical Engineering at the University of the Witwatersrand, and did postgraduate research on chromite pre-reduction as a Mintek bursar and on low carbon ferromanganese alloy smelting under a FAPA scholarship for the degrees MSc and PhD respectively. He spent 20 years in the Pyrometallurgy Division at Mintek, mostly on ferroalloy projects directly related to industry, and for seven years was Director of the Division. He was then appointed Manager Business Development and Technology Commercialisation at Mintek, and for five years was General Manager for Mindev (Pty) Ltd, which became the major shareholder in Mogale Alloys where the first commercial application of DC arc furnace smelting of chromite took place. Nick led the Mintek team that jointly with Samancor was awarded the Associated Scientific and Technical Societies' Scientific and Engineering achievement for the application of DC arc furnace technology to ferrochrome smelting. He is currently General Manager: Market and Project Evaluation at Oriel Resources, working on chrome and nickel projects in Kazakhstan and Russia. He continues to consult for Mintek on a part-time basis.

IanBarker (11K)

Ian Barker

Ian Barker joined the National Institute of Metallurgy in July 1975, initially in the Process Development Division, then moving to the Instruments Division, which later became the Measurement and Control Division. He retired from Mintek at the end of October 2008 after 33½ years' continuous service, and since November 2008 has been Visiting Professor at the School of Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand. Ian is inter alia the inventor/co-inventor of the Minstral control system for submerged-arc furnaces, the Blobulator lump-caster, and the Arcmon arc monitor. Ian's interests centre mainly around the relationship between the electrical and chemical aspects of pyrometallurgical processes, control engineering as it relates to chemical, metallurgical, and electrical processes, and inventing, developing and commercialising new technology.

Frans Baleni

Frans Baleni, the General Secretary of the National Union of Mineworkers, has been involved with the mining industry since 1979. From 1998 to 2006 he served on the board of Eskom as Non-Executive Director and Chairman of Tender Committee. His other board memberships include Rand Mutual Assurance (Non-Executive Director, 2004 to date), the JB Marks Bursary Trust Fund (Chairman, 2006 to date, the Elijah Barayi Memorial Training Centre (Non-Executive Director), the Mineworkers Investment Trust (Chairperson, 2006 to date). He is an Executive Member of the International Federation Chemical, Energy, Mine and General Workers Unions with 20 million members His political participation includes the UDF, ANC and SACP, and he also served with CODESA as a member of the negotiating team dealing with levelling the playing field.

CarlBergmann (11K)

Carl Bergmann

Carl Bergmann graduated from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1988 with BSc Eng (Chem) and joined Mintek's Minerals Processing Division, where he worked in the Physical Separation (Ore Dressing) group, becoming head of the group in 1995. He obtained a Masters degree in Project Management from the University of Port Elizabeth in 2003, and from 2002 to 2004 was General Manager of Tollsort, a Mintek joint venture company investigating optical sorting of minerals. He is currently a specialist in Physical Separation at Mintek as, focussing on new separation technologies.

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Desh Chetty

Desh Chetty obtained her BSc Honours degree in Geology at the University of Natal in 1995, followed by an MSc in Geology at the University of Cape Town in 1998. She has been with Mintek for the last eleven years, having been a Mintek bursar before then. As a member of the Mineralogy Division, she has worked on various mineralogical projects covering a wide variety of ores and products. Desh completed her PhD in Geology at the University of Johannesburg in 2008, which entailed a geometallurgical evaluation of ores from the northern Kalahari Manganese Field. She currently heads the Process Mineralogy Group, in which four automated SEMs are housed.

LeonCoetzer (11K)

Leon Coetzer

Leon Coetzer is CEO and Managing Director of Braemore Resources plc, a junior resources company with unique exposure to platinum and nickel prospects and listed on AIM and the JSE. Braemore is partnering with Mintek in establishing the commercial viability of its ConRoast smelting technology, providing the platinum industry in South Africa with a viable smelting option for its high chrome content UG2 ore. For the past 20 years, Leon has been employed within the Anglo American plc stable, of which 16 years were spent at Anglo Platinum. His last position was Head of Process Control and Instrumentation, where he defined and managed the automation and process control strategy for Anglo Platinum. The programme is recognised as a world leader in its field. Throughout his career, Leon has managed both technical and production units of large operations, including platinum concentrators and smelters, and was selected to partake in Anglo American's global leadership programme. He is a member of the advisory board of the process engineering faculties at both the University of Pretoria and the University of Stellenbosch, and is also an executive member of the South African Council for Automation and Control.

PeterCole (10K)

Peter Cole

Peter Cole graduated with a Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Natal Durban in 1981, and began work for the Extractive Metallurgy Division of the Atomic Energy Board, which in 1982 was amalgamated into Mintek. While with Mintek, he became Group Leader of the Separation Processes Group of the Hydrometallurgy Division. Peter Left Mintek in 1998, and after a brief period as an independent hydrometallurgy consultant, joined Hatch in 2002 as Practice Leader of the Africa Hydrometallurgy Group. Since 2005 he has held the position of Principal Process Engineer at Matomo Projects, now part of TWP Projects. For the past seven years he has served as a member of the International Committee for Solvent Extraction.

TomCurr (11K)

Tom Curr

Tom Curr joined Mintek in 1976 after completing a BSc (Chem Eng) at the University of Cape Town and started work on UG2 smelting and the optimisation of submerged-arc furnace ferroalloy production. He participated in the first plasma furnace trials to smelt chromite fines and subsequently manganese ore fines, and led the construction of Mintek's first DC arc furnace pilot plants. An extensive research programme on the selective reduction of chromite followed, as well as an MSc (Met Eng). Tom was appointed as Manager of the Pyrometallurgy Division in December 1989. Major achievements by the Division subsequently were the development of DC arc furnace processes for ilmenite and nickel laterite smelting, as well as the recovery of zinc metal from lead blast furnace slag and steel plant dusts. The installation of a 5.6 MVA pilot plant in 1994, which included a lead splash condenser, transformed the DC arc furnace pilot plant capabilities of Mintek. The development of a process to recover cobalt from discarded copper slags and the continuous production of magnesium metal using a novel condenser were other significant applications of the parent technology. The steady progress in developing the ConRoast process for PGM smelting has been the Division's most recent initiative. Commercial furnaces for chromite, ilmenite and copper slag smelting have seen DC arc furnace technology firmly established in the metallurgical industry, and Tom hopes to see the commercialisation of nickel laterite and PGM smelting in the next few years.

NicDawson (11K)

Nick Dawson

Nick Dawson holds a BSc and PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Natal. Following post-graduate research at the University, he took up a post in Mintek's Pyrometallurgy Division, where he participated in a range of research activities involving smelting and chemical energy-based pyrometallurgical processing. Has been directly associated with ferrochrome production and the management and development of ferrochrome operations since 1991, initially with Chromecorp Technology. These operations have grown and expanded and currently represent a key component of the Alloys Business unit of Xstrata.

JohanDeVilliers (10K)

Johan de Villiers

Johan de Villiers obtained a PhD from the University of Illinois and worked at CSIR, and RAU before joining Mintek. He took early retirement from Mintek in 2000 and joined the Geology department at the University of Pretoria. In 2005 he moved to the Department of Materials Science and Metallurgical Engineering. Johan's current research interests are the processing of titania slag, sintering reactions in iron ore, and characterisation of catalysts and sulphide minerals. He is currently engaged in a crystallographic re-evaluation of pyrrhotite crystal structures and is investigating non-stoichiometry in minerals using materials modelling techniques. He is also involved in the characterisation of PBMR nuclear fuel and in the development of chemical vapour deposition technology at UP. This technology is central in the manufacture of coated nuclear fuel. Johan supervises the research of four Masters and three PhD students.

PaulDenHoed (13K)

Paul den Hoed

Paul den Hoed studied chemical engineering at the University of Natal. He cut his pyrometallurgical teeth as a post-graduate studying the solid-state reduction of ilmenite. Pail joined the Metallurgical Thermochemistry Group at Mintek, under Arno Kleyenstuber and Johan de Villiers in 1993. He investigated and explored the corrosion and erosion of furnace refractories, the roasting and reduction of ilmenite, the chlorination of titania-bearing ores and slags, and the behaviour of heavy minerals in bubbling and circulating fluidized beds. Paul joined the Technology Department of Anglo Research in 2007. He is currently working on two pyrometallurgical problems (DRI and the decomposition of MgSO4) involving fluidized beds.

MikeDry (10K)

Mike Dry

Mike Dry graduated in chemical engineering from the University of Cape Town and spent the first four years of his career at Sasol. He joined the National Institute for Metallurgy, Mintek's forerunner, in 1980, and obtained his PhD (Eng.) from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1984, while working in Mintek's Hydrometallurgy Division. He was appointed Manager of Hydrometallurgy in 1994. Mike moved to Canada in 1999, and now owns and operates Arithmetek Inc., offering process modelling services to the extractive metallurgy industry.

TonyFilmer (12K)

Tony Filmer

Tony Filmer obtained a PhD in Extractive Metallurgy at Murdoch University in Australia before joining Mintek (then NIM) as a Senior Research Metallurgist in 1978. He moved to Rio Tinto in 1981, where he held a variety of research and managerial positions before being seconded in 2002 to the CSIRO to establish their Light Metals Flagship. He then joined Saudi Arabian company Ma'aden as Director Strategy and Planning. In 2005, Tony took up the position of Vice President: Business Improvement at Vale Inco, before becoming Vale's Director: Global Best Practice in 2008. In 2009, he founded Filmer Consulting, which specialises in interfacing business strategy and operational excellence, the structuring of major projects, and technology.

MerrillFord (12K)

Merrill Ford

Merrill Ford trained as a chemical engineer at the University of the Witwatersrand and in mineral process design at Imperial College, London. As a member of the Extraction Metallurgy Division of South Africa's Atomic Energy Board, which was then housed at Mintek, he spent several years in the field of uranium extraction metallurgy, including the development of a process for the Karoo uranium deposits, the design of NIMCIX continuous countercurrent columns for ion exchange systems, the development of resin-in-pulp technology for gold and uranium, and the modelling of uranium leaching on the Witwatersrand. Later, as Director of Mintek's Hydrometallurgy Division, he managed a wide range of hydrometallurgical projects for recovery of minerals and metals. Subsequently, as Director of Techno-economics, Planning and Information at Mintek, he was responsible for techno-economic studies, information systems, corporate planning and business development. In 2003, Merrill joined ANSTO Minerals as Manager Special Projects where he led a wide range of uranium process development projects for mining companies. He was appointed Manager Metallurgy for Paladin Energy in 2008.

PetrusFusi (11K)

Petrus Fusi

Petrus Fusi is Head of Public Policy and Economic Regulation at Transnet. He holds an MBA degree from Bond University and a BSc. Chemical Engineering from Tuskegee University. He was previously the General Manager: Mineral Policy and Sustainable Development at Mintek, where he was involved in a number of mineral policy formulations and strategies for South Africa and Southern African Development Community. Before joining Mintek, he was Senior Process Consultant at Hatch and worked on a number of greenfield and brownfield metallurgical projects in Africa. He has over 18 years' experience in the mining and metals industry in a career spanning across companies such as De Beers; Holcim and Hatch as production superintendent and process consultant specialising on grinding systems and energy management.

AndrieGarbers-Craig (11K)

Andrie Garbers-Craig

Andrie Garbers-Craig joined the Mineral and Process Chemistry Division of Mintek fresh out of university in 1987. She furthered her career at Mintek by being involved in fundamental and applied research in the field of pyrometallurgy, focusing on the study and characterisation of slag-metal-gas-refractory and slag-matte interactions. In 1995 she joined Iscor R&D, first as a member of the Refractories Group, and then as a member of the Steelmaking Group. In mid-1999 she joined the Department of Materials Science and Metallurgical Engineering at the University of Pretoria, where she is a member of the Pyrometallurgy Group, concentrating on refractory materials. Andrie is the current President of the South African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

MayHermanus (12K)

May Hermanus

May Hermanus took up an appointment in April 2006 as an Adjunct-Professor at the University of the Witwatersrand, where she is the Director of the Centre for Sustainability in Mining and Industry (CSMI). She currently serves as Chairperson of the Board of the National Nuclear Regulator (NNR), and as a Director on the Board of the Railway Safety Regulator in the public sector. She is also Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the Bokamoso ESOP Trust (which oversees the Employee Share Ownership Plan of Anglogold Ashanti) and a Director of Afripalm Resources. May's interest in Sustainable Development stems from her long involvement in occupational health and safety. She has worked in the NGO, trade union, private and public sectors in South Africa, and in International Labour Organisation forums. She was formerly the Chief Inspector of Mines for South Africa, and has served as Chairperson of the Mine Health and Safety Council, Chairperson of Board of the Mining Qualifications Authority, and as a member of various Boards and committees including Mintek. Her roles and responsibilities have ranged from accounting officer, senior manager, regulator, and facilitator of stakeholder processes, to consultant and policy developer. May has a BSc (Geology) from the University of Cape Town and an MSc (Engineering - Physical Metallurgy) from the University of the Witwatersrand. She is a Takemi Fellow 1998/9 of the Harvard School of Public Health, a Fellow of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, and a member of the Collegium Ramazzini.

RaymondHewer (12K)

Raymon Hewer

Raymond Hewer completed his PhD in Biochemistry at the University of Johannesburg, where he was involved in the design and development of potential HIV vaccine components. He then joined Mintek as part of AuTEK Biomed, a multidisciplinary team involved in early stage drug discovery. He currently oversees the HIV research component of the AuTEK Biomed group. In 2008, Raymond undertook a short research visit to Merck and Company in Pennsylvania, USA, as part of a collaborative project. He has also published several research articles and presented his work both locally and abroad.

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Chris Hockaday

Chris Hockaday studied electronic engineering at the University of Natal under a bursary from Mintek, and joined the Furnace Control Group of the Measurement and Control Division in 2001. He has spent the past eight years commissioning Minstral, and later FurnStar, submerged-arc furnace control systems throughout the world, as well as developing new furnace management applications, such as the Arcmon electrode arc monitoring system. Chris became head of the Furnace Group in January 2008.

RodneyJones (5K)

Rodney Jones

Rodney Jones has worked in the Pyrometallurgy Division at Mintek since 1985. He holds a BSc (Eng) degree in chemical engineering and a MSc (Eng) degree in metallurgy from the University of the Witwatersrand, and a BA in logic and philosophy from the University of South Africa. He is a registered Professional Engineer, a Fellow and Council member of SAIMM, a Fellow of SAIChE, and a full member of CSSA. He was a Visiting Professor at the Center for Pyrometallurgy, University of Missouri-Rolla, during July and August 1996, and in 2002 and 2003 also lectured in pyrometallurgy at Murdoch University, Perth, as an Adjunct Associate Professor. His main research interests are in the field of computer simulation and design of high-temperature processes, and the development of thermodynamic software. He is the author of Pyrosim software for the steady-state simulation of pyrometallurgical processes, which is in use in 22 countries around the world. Rodney is also one of the inventors of the ConRoast process, which has recently seen the demonstration of DC arc smelting of more than 44 000 tons of PGM-containing materials at Mintek.

Johnny Kalala

Johnny Kalala completed his BSc in Chemical Engineering in 1998. He worked on a copper-cobalt concentrator as a junior engineer in the Democratic Republic of Congo. He joined Mintek in 2005 from the University of the Witwatersrand, where he was studying towards a PhD on modelling tumbling mill lifter wear using the Discrete Element Method. He completed his PhD in 2008. Johnny is currently the head of the comminution group in the Minerals Processing Division. He has published a number of papers in referreed journals in the field of comminution.

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Isabel King

Isabel King was a Mintek bursar and obtained a B.Eng degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Pretoria. She joined Mintek's Pyrometallurgy Division in 2004, and transferred to the Minerals Processing Division in 2005. Isabel has been involved in various iron ore metallurgical testwork campaigns, including beneficiation studies for Kumba Iron Ore and Tata Steel. She is currently the Acting Head of Physical Separation in the Minerals Processing Division.

KeithLiddell (11K)

Keith Liddell

After graduating from Birmingham University in 1981 with a degree in Minerals Engineering, Keith Liddell took up employment with Mintek, where he worked in the Ore Dressing Division with responsibility for precious metals. Leaving Mintek in 1988, he pursued his patented fine milling technology with Metprotech in a joint venture with Namakwa Sands Ltd for ultra fine milling of zircon sand. Moving to Perth in 1994 as a consultant, he joined Aquarius Platinum in 1997, becoming MD in 1998. He conceived and designed the Kroondal Platinum mine, which embodied novel mining, processing and management methods. In 2001 he set up Mineral Securities (Minsec) - a resource investment company - and as an investor and Chairman also developed the Sally Malay nickel mine in Western Australia. In 1995 Minsec invested in Platmin, and Keith became deputy Chairman and then Chairman in 2008. Platmin is currently commissioning the Pilanesberg platinum mine, which will produce 250 000 ounces of PGMs in concentrate per annim. Both Kroondal and Platmin have used Mintek intensively for laboratory and pilot testing for their projects. Keith is a registered professional engineer in South Africa, Australia and the UK, and has received two silver medals from Mintek.

BernardLoriol (10K)

Bernard Loriolis

Bernard Loriolis is the founder of Best Asset Class (BAC), a financial company based in Zug, Switzerland that specialises in niche investment funds. Before launching BAC, Bernard was responsible for developing the hedge funds of Hartcourt AG, and prior to that, he worked freelance in Switzerland, South Africa and Madagascar between 1998 and 2001. Between 1990 and 1997 he was a member of the Executive Board of the Geneva bank Darier Hentsch & Cie, where he was an asset manager and in charge of institutional clients. In addition to his business interests, Bernard has also become devoted to philanthropy through the Bushveld Foundation, which was created in 2006 to help Aids orphans in the Bushveld region of South Africa.

PeterLotz (9K)

Peter Lotz

Peter Lotz is Head: Gold Process and Environment in Mintek's Hydrometallurgy Division. After gaining his Swiss Diploma in Organic Chemistry, he spent five years in organic chemistry R&$38;D with Swiss multinational CIBA-GEIGY), and six years working on techno-commercial developments in the Swiss environmental industry. He has a total of 19 years' experience in hydrometallurgy R&D, the past 12 of which he has specialised in cyanide-related topics. Peter was heavily involved in setting up the South African and International (ICMI) Cyanide Management codes, as well as with subsequent site auditing activities locally and internationally.

BrianLoveday (11K)

Brian Loveday

Brian Loveday spent the first 14 years of his professional career at Mintek (then the Government Metallurgical Laboratory and the National Institute for Metallurgy), rising to the position of Director of the Ore Dressing Division. He then moved to Anglo American as Manager of their Research Labs, and later worked as a consultant in Anglo's Head Office. He moved to the University of KwaZulu-Natal in 1992, initially on secondment, as Professor in the School of Chemical Engineering. He is now retired, but still participates in research and some part-time lecturing as an Emeritus Professor.

AlanMcKenzie (4K)

Alan McKenzie

Alan McKenzie has an MSc in Geology and Mineralogy and for the past 18 years he has been involved in the field of metallurgy, with particular emphasis on the role that mineral properties play during beneficiation. He is currently the manager of the Minerals Processing Division at Mintek. Prior to that, he was the manager of Mintek's High Temperature Technology Division. Alan is also a member of Council and past President of the Geological Society of South Africa, and on behalf of the Society chairs the committee responsible for assessing any complaints against breaches of the SAMREC reporting Code

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Jason McPherson

Jason McPherson completed his postgraduate studies in precious metal catalysis at the University of Cape Town in 2003. Currently, he heads up the Scale-up and Commercialisation Unit of Project AuTEK's Catalysis Programme at Mintek, and as such is actively involved in the production, marketing and application of AuTEK's AUROliteTM range of gold catalysts. He is highly active in application areas such as CO oxidation, preferential oxidation, liquid phase oxidations (e.g. glucose, glycerol), and selective hydrogenation. Jason is also a technology advisor to the World Gold Council.

JohanNell (13K)

Johan Nell

Johan Nell works for Hatch.

LloydNelson (13K)

Lloyd Nelson

Lloyd Nelson gained a BSc (Eng.) and MSc (Eng.) from the University of the Witwatersrand, and a PhD in Metallurgical Engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla (UMR), USA. He was a member of Mintek's Pyrometallurgy Division from 1984 to 1991, when he took up a position as Graduate Teaching and Research Assistant at UMR. In 1994, he moved to Billiton Process Research in the position of Manager Chromium R&D, and between 1998 and 2001 Held several managerial positions at Samancor Chrome, including that of technology Manager. From 2002 to 2007, Lloyd was Associate and Practice Leader, Pyrometallurgy - Africa, at Hatch. He is currently Head of Smelting and Refining Technology, at Anglo Platinum.

DavidNoko (11K)

David Noko

David Noko started his career at GEC (now Alstom), an international manufacturing company, in design engineering and maintenance management. During this time he he completed a diploma in mechanical engineering at Wits Technikon in 1984. As a student engineer he was part of the project team that implemented Just-In-Time (JIT) philosophy at GEC. In 1987, he joined South African Breweries and gained exposure in many different technical areas of the business, including the implementation of World Class Manufacturing Principles. He was promoted to senior management level in 1991 and moved through the ranks before joining Pepsi Cola International in 1994, which provided him with extensive international and overseas experience. He joined Air Chefs (Pty) Ltd, the largest company in South Africa at the time, in 1999 as CEO, where he continued to implement business and process reengineering, which resulted in significant cost savings for the company. He is currently Managing Director of De Beers.

ChristophPawlik (11K)

Christoph Pawlik

Christoph Pawlik graduated at the College of Chemical Technology in Vienna, specialising in Analytical Chemistry and Environmental Technology and holding an engineering degree. From 2003 to 2006 he worked as Research Assistant at the Christian Doppler Laboratory of Chemical Engineering at High Temperatures, researching fluid bed reduction of iron ore fines to develop a kinetic and thermodynamic model of the process. He was I was further involved in the design, construction and optimisation of fluidised bed reactors. Christoph relocated to South Africa in 2006 (his wife is a South African), and began work at Mintek as an engineer at the Hydrometallurgy Division, with the major scope of work being base metal leaching and refining He also became involved in the treatment of precious metals. He took on the position of Head: Extraction in August 2008.

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Quinn Reynolds

Quinn Reynolds studied for a BSc in Chemical Engineering at the University of Natal from 1994 to 1997. He started work at Mintek in the Pyrometallurgy Division in 1998, and completed a Master's degree in Engineering at the University of the Witwatersrand in 2001. Quinn is currently Chief Research Engineer, with research areas that include electrical modelling, design, and scale-up of DC arc furnaces; theoretical and experimental studies of thermal radiation in furnace freeboards; computational modelling of plasma arc systems; high speed photography and electrical measurement; applications of high performance computing in pyrometallurgy; and the use of open-source software technology in process modelling.

PeterScott (11K)

Peter Scott

Peter Scott studied for his PhD in Chemical Engineering at the University of the Witwatersrand with a Mintek bursary, and joined Mintek in 1973, where he carried out R&D in mineral and process chemistry and hydrometallurgy. From 1976 to 1986 he was Director of Waste Management at Darling & Hodgson, following which he joined Chemserve as Director of Technical Products. Peter returned to Mintek in 1991 to take up the position of Director of Marketing. In 2001 he became CEO of the Atoll Group, a company that specialised in the recovery of ferroalloys from slags and dusts and general mineral beneficiation. He is currently a consultant with Jigmet CC, which conducts general metallurgical and metallurgical investment studies.

Casper Steenkamp

Casper Steenkamp studied for a B.Eng (Chem) at Stellenbosch University and gained a postgraduate qualification in Technology Management at the University of Pretoria. He joined Mintek in 2006 as a Process Control Engineer, designing and implementing advanced process control systems.From 2007 to 2008 he spent 12 months in Mintek's Australian office in Perth. Casper has worked on milling, flotation and leaching projects in RSA, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Australia, Chile, Papua New Guinea and India, and is project leader for a number of research and development projects within Mintek.

RobertTshikhudo (12K)

Robert Tshikhudo

Robert Tshikhudo is the head of nanoscience and nanotechnology in Mintek's Advanced Materials Division. He holds a MSc (Chemistry) degree from Rhodes University and a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Liverpool (UK). His research interests include the preparation of metal nanoparticles and their applications in health (diagnostics and therapeutics), water (monitoring and remediation) and other related areas.

LutkeVonKetelhodt (11K)

Lütke von Ketelhodt

Lütke von Ketelhodt was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa. He holds a Higher National Diploma in Metalliferous Mining (Wits Technikon) as well as a BCom (Wits). For f years he worked in the deep-level gold mines in the Witwatersrand area as well as coal (Douglas Mine) and chrome (Winterveld Chrome Mine). He moved from South Africa to Germany and then Barcelona, Spain, where he held various positions in Financial Controlling and Financial management within the AEG Group. He returned to South Africa, where he got back into mining as Managing Director of WIMICO, a company that specialised in underground rock-consolidation. Further financial management positions followed within the Mannesmann Demag Group before he joined IMS Engineering as the General Manager for the MikroSort Division, where he worked closely Commodas, for whom he is currently General Manager.

MikeValenta (3K)

Mike Valenta

Mike Valenta was a Mintek bursar at the University of the Witwatersrand, where he gained his BSc (Engineering) Metallurgy. From 1991 to 1994 he was senior engineer in Mintek's Mineral Processing Division, where he was engaged in laboratory and pilot plant flotation testwork and the implementation of the results on industrial concentrators. Mike moved to Lonmin Platinum in 1994, where he held the successive positions of Metallurgical Manager at Karee Concentrator, Project Manager responsible for development of a production information system covering the entire PGM supply chain from mine to refined metal, and Production Manager at Western Platinum Refinery. In 2003, Mike became Consulting Metallurgist at Hatch Africa, where he was responsible for projects in Africa, Australia, and South America, including the Cerra Corona project in Peru. He is currently Managing Director of Metallicon Process Consulting, where he is involved in a wide range of projects including industrial minerals, coal, base metals, PGMs, and diamonds, as well as the establishment of Metanza Mineral Processors, a outsourced plant operations company

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Petrus van Staden

Petrus van Staden gained his MSc in Chemical Engineering from the University of the Witwatersrand, and joined Mintek's Hydrometallurgy Division, where he spent 10 years doing laboratory and pilot plant investigations on gold extraction by conventional cyanidation, heap leaching and in-stope leaching. During this time he also developed novel equipment for activated carbon regeneration. For the past 13 years he has been with Mintek's Biotechnology Division, leading laboratory and pilot plant campaigns on the bioleaching of base metals, including the development of processes for the bioleaching of dirty chalcopyrite concentrates, the indirect bioleaching of zinc concentrates, the high temperature heap bioleaching of copper ore, and heap leaching administration software. Petrus has headed heap leaching and heap bioleaching amenability studies on mostly uranium and copper ores for a number of commercial clients. His current research topics include the geochemical interactions occurring between gangue and acid over the heap leach life cycle of an ore, and the benefits of bacterial activity to the heap bioleaching of uranium ore. He was appointed as Manager of the Biotechnology Division in May 2009.

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Jacolien Wyethe

Jacolien graduated as a Chemical Engineer from the University of Pretoria in 1994. She joined Mintek's Hydrometallurgy Division in December 1994, where she worked on numerous projects during her stay of almost 12 years. Jacolien joined Kumba Resources in September 2006 as Process Engineer: Base metals. After the unbundling of Kumba, she became part of Exxaro. In March 2009, she joined Zincor, Exxaro's xinc refinery in Springs, as the Operations Manager.