Beneficiation of Minerals

Field of Research: Engineering Management

Lecturer: Mr Wouter Bam

What’s it about?

Nations are becoming increasingly focussed on not only “inserting” themselves into global production networks, but also ensuring that they capture more value from the activities in which they are involved. As such, there is increasing emphasis on ensuring that economic activities do not only provide economic benefits to their host nations, but also enable social upliftment and ensure environmental sustainability.

Within this context, there exists a need for research to support the evaluation of how countries and regions capture value from their participation in global supply chains and how different policy options may affect this value.

To this end the research group focusses on various themes which include:

  • Evaluating the impact of proposed policies on particular industries
  • Developing tools to better analyse value capture in a complex environment
  • Investigating the feasibility of different technology options in particular industries
  • Investigating the support and infrastructure that are required to unlock economic development and growth

Research Projects

Completed Masters Projects:

  • A feasibility study for titanium recycling in South Africa
  • Valorisation of Ferrochrome Slag: Towards increasing the beneficial utilisation of Ferrochrome Slag in South Africa
  • An analysis of the possible effects of developmental pricing: a simulation study of the polypropylene industry in South African
  • Comparing the sustainable development potential of metal beneficiation industry by using publicly available sustainability information
  • Identifying barriers to growth in mineral value chains: an analytical framework approach

Collaboration

To ensure greater impact and relevance of research, students are encouraged to build networks and collaborate with industry, government, NGO’s and other research organisations. As such, the beneficiation group has built a collaborative relationship with individuals within the following organisations:

  • Institute for African Alternatives, South Africa
  • Faculty of Economics and Business, KU Leuven, Belgium
  • Institute for Manufacturing, University of Cambridge, UK
  • Mintek, South Africa

Key publications

1. Du Plessis, J.A. and Bam, W.G., 2017. Scoping phase comparison of development opportunities by making use of publicly available sustainability information. Procedia Manufacturing, 8, pp.207-214.
2. Bam, W. and De Bruyne, K., 2017. Location policy and downstream mineral processing: A research agenda. The Extractive Industries and Society, 4(3), pp.443-447.
3. Du Plessis, J. and Bam, W., 2018. Comparing the sustainable development potential of industries: a role for sustainability disclosures?. Sustainability, 10(3), p.878.
4. Van Zyl, H., Bam, W. and Steenkamp, J., 2016, October. Identifying barriers faced by key role players in the South African manganese industry. In Institute for Industrial Engineering Conference (p. 365).

Research Group Members

Wouter Bam
Lecturer