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Machine learning approaches for ore deposit characterization in the Platreef (Bushveld Complex, South Africa)


College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences

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Dr H Hughes No more applications being accepted Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

This PhD forms part of a large consortium project (NL4D) funded by Anglo American involving University of Exeter (CSM), Cardiff University and University of Leicester. The NL4D project runs for five years from January 2020 and will include three PhD studentships (one based at Exeter) working alongside senior researchers, postdocs and Masters students from all three universities. The PhD researcher will have access to labs at all three institutions and the opportunity to spend some extended period working at each. There will be regular interaction with Anglo American through fieldwork, internal reporting and workshops/meetings in South Africa and the UK. The PhD researcher will be encouraged to present their results at national and international conferences.

Project Description:

The Northern Limb of the Bushveld Complex (South Africa) is host to the world’s largest resource of platinum-group elements (PGE), along with significant nickel, copper and cobalt in a complex magmatic sulphide ore deposit. All of these resources are linked with environmentally-friendly technologies and energy usages in the automotive industry, with the PGE being essential components in catalytic converters, and Ni, Co and Cu critical metals in Electric Vehicle batteries. The Northern Limb of the Bushveld is likely going to play a large part in the switch to cleaner automotive technology.

This PhD project aims to use MLA to unravel complex industry-standard bulk geochemical datasets in order to understand clustering and important correlations for geology and mineralisation. This PhD provides an exceptional opportunity to integrate machine learning with traditional geochemistry applied to an extensive company borehole database.

More information about this PhD studentship project is available on http://www.exeter.ac.uk/studying/funding/award/?id=3907.

Funding Notes

The University of Exeter’s College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences, in partnership with Anglo American, is inviting applications for a fully-funded PhD studentship to commence in September 2020. For eligible students the studentship will cover UK/EU tuition fees plus an annual tax-free stipend of at least £15,009 for 3.5 years full-time, or pro rata for part-time study. The student will be based at the Camborne School of Mines in the College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences at the Penryn Campus of the University of Exeter, in Cornwall.


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