Eramet is teaming up with the EIT RawMaterials to encourage more groundbreaking solutions to solve water management challenges within the mining and metals industry.
The Water Resource Innovation Challenge 2023 is seeking specific solutions to water-related challenges, such as safeguarding water quality by addressing concerns like pollution, wastewater management and erosion, reducing water consumption, and maximising recycling and implementing closed-loop systems in the field of hydrometallurgy.
Since water mismanagement within the mining operations can harm local communities and habitats, the industry has a heightened obligation to adopt sustainable water management practices to minimise its environmental impact while also ensuring access to valuable resources, Eramet says.
For decades, Eramet has been actively implementing water management measures in its mining ventures and has a broad portfolio of successful projects that use creative solutions in numerous locations throughout the world, including Argentina, Gabon, or New Caledonia, it says.
The ultimate goal of the challenge is to create lasting partnerships between Eramet and start-ups. This presents both an opportunity to collaborate with a global mining group at the forefront of sustainable mining solutions and to gain visibility on an international scale.
Last year’s challenge was dedicated to safety. The winner, Unusuals, proposed a solution on the use of artificial intelligence and data processing to automate maintenance of assets and detect any anomalies. Its project is currently being tested in Senegal.
This year, with the help of EIT RawMaterials, Eramet is looking to foster the next breakthrough innovation to boost the management of water to help ensure a sustainable future for the mining and metals industry.
The winner will be awarded €50,000 ($53,652) to carry out a POC (Proof Of Concept), supported by Eramet, to develop and test their solution in the field.
Bernd Schäfer, CEO, Managing Director, EIT RawMaterials, said: “Promoting sustainability in the mining and metals industry and fostering innovation are fundamental elements of EIT RawMaterials’ mission, so I am thrilled to announce our support for Eramet’s Water Resource Innovation Challenge 2023. Initiatives like this have a key role to play in providing sustainable access to strategic raw materials, and Europe’s transition to a green and digital economy.”
Marion Lenoir, Open Innovation Director at Eramet Ideas, added: “Capping water consumption and preserving its quality is a paramount global challenge. At Eramet, we believe that innovation plays a vital role in addressing this in our industry. We are excited to launch the Water Resource Innovation Challenge 2023, as we seek to discover and support the next innovator who can contribute to this crucial cause in cooperation with our teams.
Start-ups and SMEs offering solutions to preserve water quality or reduce water consumption and/or maximise recycling in mining or hydrometallurgy are invited to apply to the Water Resource Innovation Challenge 2023 from June 5 to September 13, 2023. A group of 10 pre-selected teams will be invited to participate in an online pitching round on October 25, 2023. Three finalists will be selected for the innovation seminar pitch in January 2024 and the winning team will be awarded a collaboration contract with Eramet and €50,000 in funding to realise a Proof of Concept.
Interested parties can apply here: https://open-innovation.eitrawmaterials.eu/challenges/eramet-water-2023/