Tag Archives: RMIT University

RMIT University opens up test facilities to the mining sector

RMIT University has signed an agreement with Amira Global that, it says, will see it join an international network of forward-thinking organisations working collectively to solve major mining industry challenges.

The Memorandum of Understanding between Amira Global and RMIT paves the way for mining and mining supply companies to use the university’s test facilities to de-risk innovation and technology entering the industry.

In announcing the agreement, Amira Global CEO, Dr Jacqui Coombes, said RMIT was a valued addition to the Amira CoLabs Program.

“The MOU offers Amira Global Members facilitated access to RMIT’s test labs on a case-by-case basis,” Dr Coombes said. “This will allow them to accelerate the implementation and translation of research and development with the least disruption to on-site operations.

“Amira Global’s CoLabs Program connects a network of test facilities around the world. Without facilities such as those offered by RMIT, the implementation of technology that could improve the economic, social, and environmental performance of the resources sector is severely impaired.”

RMIT Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Innovation and Vice-President, Professor Calum Drummond, said industry collaboration was a key focus for the university and an important ingredient for producing high impact research.

“Industry is embedded in everything we do and a key way that we’re supporting Australia’s economic recovery,” Drummond said. “We look forward to codesigning and co-creating solutions with new industry partners.”

RMIT’s Advanced Manufacturing Precinct already has a track record in helping industry partners with high value-add technology, such as rapid prototyping and repairs of metal parts in mining using 3D printers.

“Mining companies will find a range of relevant research capability at RMIT, backed by world-class facilities and expertise,” Professor Drummond. “Some of these areas include circular economy and sustainability expertise, environmental custodianship, resource processing technology, materials engineering, advanced manufacturing, Industry 4.0, geospatial science and social policy.”

Amira Global is a member-based not-for-profit charged with transforming the minerals industry through thought leadership platforms; R&D collaboration to address key breakthroughs; and the development of implementation and commercialisation pathways to ensure R&D and innovation outcomes translate back into industry, it says.

As a global university of technology and design, RMIT enjoys an international reputation for high-impact, applied research.

Blockchain trading software could lead to golden future for miners

A new blockchain software platform is allowing miners to trade on the future value of their unprocessed materials, according to industry-backed research organisation Mining3.

Julian Wise, a Software Engineer at Mining3 and RMIT University Student, said the software used financial algorithms along with transparent blockchain “smart contracts”, to enable the trading of derivatives.

Derivatives are financial contracts where buyers agree to purchase an asset, in this case unprocessed ore containing gold, on a specific date at a set price.

Unprocessed ore is often stockpiled if not profitable to process or extract at current market rates. But Wise said fluctuations in commodity prices and advances in mining technology meant ore previously deemed unprofitable often becomes profitable to process in the future.

“This simply harnesses that future value of unprocessed materials today to give miners immediate cash flow and royalties from their stockpiles, whilst enabling market traders to profit on future price increases,” he said.

“But while people are already trading on the future value of processed metals and minerals, no-one has applied the same pricing mechanisms and exchange styles higher up the supply chain to unprocessed minerals.”

The team’s pioneering project was presented this week at the 3rd Symposium on Distributed Ledger Technology on Queensland’s Gold Coast.

To develop the prototype software, RMIT University students worked with Mining3, which had a vision for a next-generation blockchain-backed platform.

Mining3 senior mining researchers provided the mining industry context, technical detail and know-how on mineral price calculations while the RMIT Software Engineering and IT students developed the pricing algorithm, blockchain ecosystem and website interface, according to Mining3.

Mining3 Chief Operating Officer, Susan Grandone, said the technology was built through interdisciplinary co-operation, with the solution combining mineral technologies and finance, deployed as a software service.

The technology is currently set up as a prototype on a demonstration website for internal use and testing. Another iteration of development is necessary to carry the proof of concept through to a platform that can be utilised in a production environment for real value transactions.