BASF, the world’s leading chemical company, opened its global mining research and development center at the Australian Minerals Research Centre (AMRC) in Perth, WA. At the new facility, BASF scientists will study specific innovation needs for mineral processing and metal production, to help reduce energy and reuse water at mines in Australia and around the world.
Speaking at the official opening, Australian Minister for Resources and Energy, Martin Ferguson, said that Australian mining relies on technological innovation to drive improved productivity. BASF’s research will thus contribute to the global competitiveness of the Australian mining industry, helping to maximize returns to the community and shareholders.
“Chemistry is a key enabler to making tomorrow’s mining industry more sustainable,” said Dr. Martin Brudermueller, Vice Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of BASF SE. “With the latest advances in mining solutions research, BASF aims to help mining operations to minimize water consumption, maximize recovery, reduce land areas consumed by tailings disposal and minimize the cost and time required to rehabilitate sites.”
The AMRC site is part of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia’s national science agency and one of the largest and most diverse research agencies in the world. With a team of six advanced material researchers at the BASF center by the end of 2012 and about 20 researchers over the next five years, focus topics will include advanced rheology modifiers for the improvement of the thickening process for valuables and tailings, as well as modification of the crystallization process in alumina production.
“High quality ores are becoming depleted and new mines are often in hostile locations while environmental, health and safety regulations are becoming more stringent. BASF aims to help the industry face these challenges with solutions across our customers’ value chain. This new research and development center will further develop our expertise in areas, which are crucial to meeting future needs,” said Dr. Steffen Kudis, Head of BASF’s Global Oilfield and Mining Solutions businesses.