Australian mining experts are working closely with countries in Latin America to share the latest technology and expertise. In a bid to work closer with the mining industry in the region, the University of Queensland’s commercial arm JKTech has established a new office in Santiago, Chile.
JKTech, which commercialises research from the university’s Sustainable Minerals Institute, has opened the office to provide technologies and skills to enhance the economic and social wealth of its Latin American industry partners. The university’s vice chancellor Peter Høj said it makes sense for the university to work closer with industry. ‘As a research intensive university among the world’s top 100 universities, it makes sense for us to work closely with industry to ensure our discoveries make it to the coalface sooner, so the benefits of good research are being felt even earlier,’ he explained.
‘This is particularly important in mining as we strive to seek greater solutions for safety, process efficiency and operational improvements in Chile, and in mining regions across the world,’ Høj said.
Recently the result of university’s research was the Ground Probe Slope Stability Radar, which helped revolutionise safety in mining through the detection of slope movement. ‘By establishing an office in Chile, we can directly provide the support and mechanisms to help drive research outcomes to the market, and to directly benefit the people of Latin America,’ Høj added.
The university together with miners like BHP and Xstrata also provides English language training, education and health initiatives in the region. The latest in world class mining solutions will be offered directly to the Latin American region, with the establishment of the new office in Santiago, Chile. The university currently has 15 formal research and academic agreements with 10 institutions in Chile. These are based on many shared interests and collaborations in areas including education, English language training, mining, energy, and health.
Quote from Gringos.com : “Mining in Colombia has ‘lost competitiveness’ and will not hit government targets for 2012, said the director of Colombia mining industry body Wednesday.”
Key collaborations in Chile include a collaborative English Language Institute (ELI) with the Universidad Católica del Norte (UCN) in Antofagasta, Chile. The ELI will be formalised as a joint venture company between UQ and UCN under Chilean law this month and its activities will expand to include English language test administration and related services.
There is also a long term partnership between the University of Queensland and the Comision Nacional de Investigacion Cientifica y Tecnologica (CONICYT) to develop human capital and capacity building in research and innovation. Chilean engineering undergraduate students have the opportunity to experience research, commercialisation of research and innovation processes at the university while developing their English language skills in general, academic and research contexts.