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Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Redefining of deposit potential and improving assessment and access to undiscovered and existing mineral deposits

Objectives of the commitment

• Finding and refining methods for the examination of existing and new deposits, as well as process improvements to improve ore mineral recoveries
• Promoting and incorporate a methodology based on technology flow beginning with focus on elementary mineral characterization, its liberation, to define full potential of deposit and methods of extraction of any acessorry minerals.
Strengthen economical potential of production.
• Re-address the diminishing access to raw materials and review the technology chain “Charge-waste-product” in mining and recycling industry to optimize equilibrated “zero waste management”.
• Development of new services and business (Private Public Partnership)

Description of the activities

The commitment includes the actions along the value chain (primary, secondary resources and substitution) divided into the process stages:
a) Choosing materials/processes for detailed analysis
The philosophy of the envisaged project is to follow the ore starting from its origin to its final product. This will be done on an atom and molecular basis (chemistry) as well as on a mineral basis (mineralogy). Process mineralogy will be the “track” on which the project moves. Samples from all stages of this “track” will be analyzed and mineralogical characterized to identify ways and means of streamlining or improving the process.
b) Performing of study of materials:
• Sample preparation and the generation of representative sample material is always a major challenge in any analytical approach. The long-standing expertise of the project partners will richly contribute to address this topic.
• SEM/FIB/EDS The partners with access to dedicated automated SEM, XRD tools for mineralogy analysis, chemical labs, technology portfolio and trained personnel will work together to find hidden potentials by means of applying new analyzing technologies for mining and recycling industry. The group will be working on the revision of evaluating deposits’, beneficiation and product improvement potentials by means of various state-of-the-art techniques and existing knowledge of industrial and research partners.
• Chemical analysis of samples originating from the entire mineral processing chain will be re-examined with use of SEM/FIB/XRD and chemical analyses. The results will be input to modify or propose new technologies to improve traditional technologies.
c) Technology optimization studies:
• Chemical and mineralogical variations of the charges in processing plants are often the cause of performance loss. Textural variations in the ore mineral assemblages are often under-evaluated in the problem identification. A refined and statistically meaningful analysis of mineralogical compositions and mineral textures are essential for process modeling and for the anticipating of processing problems or to solve problems during already existing processing activities. Density properties, mineralogical compositions, geometrical and textural properties of ore and gang minerals are extremely pertinent for the evaluation of an ore deposit and for choosing adequate processing methods. This can be achieved by the interaction of the proposed techniques and the experience of the partners participating in this project. The long history of the project partners and the application of new technologies developed only over the recent years will be applied in resolving these issues will be applied to maximize the efficiency of mineral processing as well as waste management The advantages of the application of these technologies such for example the Qemscan analytical and modeling technology for exploration and process improvement is already widely known and in use in Australia, the USA, South America, but has not yet found regular and routine application in the European mining industry. This is a source of concern in terms of the international competitiveness of the European mineral and raw materials market and will be addressed in the present study.
• Waste material analysis and characterization such as dust and effluent analysis will play an essential part in the proposed initiative.
d) Technology validation
• The existing technologies from the exploration, via the mining and beneficiation processes, up to the product evaluation will be an integral part of the presented study. Any improvement on the early parts of the mining and processing chain will exponentially impact on later parts of the processing steps, warranting a detailed and matriculate research approach.
e) Technology prototyping.
• The Collaboration with administrative actors responsible for minerals management, land use and planning will lead to development of the guidelines for a long term local/interregional sustainable minerals supply. The actions is will require the access to existing database of national geological surveys research materials (cores), anthropogenic deposits and post production waste in order to redefine potential and the consequently the plans for exploitation and process improvement.

Description of the expected impacts

• Elaboration of most effective low-waste technology with consideration of environment impact. Adoptive technology will be a key action for reopening and reindustrialization of former “raw materials rich” regions, where mining/extraction is abandon.
• The group will share and exchange the outcomes of research and existing practices of minerals to formulate technology procedure. Close look into recycling of anthropogenic deposits. Finding of potential technologies application to optimize to local character of deposits with regard of novel exploitation techniques, market situation, legislation and environment.
• Enforcing the process of exploitation of regional potential towards applications and smart specialization. Coalition of experts in solving industrial problems will deliver the proof of effectives and extend of extraction possibilities on existing technologies in industrial applications and support of SMEs contribution.
• Internationalization and multiplayer action, to joint potential in win-win collaboration for all players. Today implementation of analyzing tools like SEM to industry takes a long time, when same laboratories are responsible of quality, charge control to run processes into their accepted boundaries. The development and precise control is impossible, because of time consuming processes, what usually may block daily operation of companies. Here is a place for joint actions.

Coordinating organisation & role

Name of the coordinating organisation: Wroclaw Research Centre EIT+ Country: PolandEntity profile: OtherRole within the commitment:

Coordination and solution provider to outer partners. Providing access to personnel, tools and technologies. Data treatment. Finding a possibilities and collaboration establishing with industrial and research partners. Preparing of must-to-know and must-to-do activities. Proposing of actions to distribute and commercialize the outcome of partners activities. Integration of technology outwork, communication to administrative bodies as input to generate actions of dissemination.

Other partners

Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Angewandten Forschung e.V.

Name of the organisation: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Angewandten Forschung e.V. Country: Germany Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: Fraunhofer will lead the CFRP and GFRP recycling research.
Fraunhofer will perform corrosion tests on the developed materials.
Fraunhofer will work with CIDAUT on the implementation, validation and refinement of LCCA tools for the project. Fraunhofer is the Quality Manager of the Consortium and will oversee deliverables and general reporting are produced with the best possible quality following agreed review standards.

Fundacion Cidaut

Name of the organisation: Fundacion Cidaut Country: Spain Entity profile:
Role within the commitment: CIDAUT will lead the research activities on materials recycling and compounding, implementing lab scale demonstrators of each process at its premises and, later, supporting end-users upscale the processes.
CIDAUT will perform mechanical tests, microstructural analyses, injection moulding capability studies on the developed materails, and will work with Fraunhofer on the implementation, validation and refinement of LCCA tools for the project.

RWTH Aachen University (Institute of plastic processing (IKV)

Name of the organisation: RWTH Aachen University (Institute of plastic processing (IKV) Country: Germany Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: RWTH will implement the novel 3D Generative Preforming process (3D Fibre Spraying) that enables to create high-value long fibre-reinforced 3D preforms for thermoplastic and thermoset composites at low process costs (different kinds of yarn as a raw material, low tooling costs due to low cavity pressures). This cost effective technology allows to align the sprayed fibres in order to produce high-performance, engineered anisotropic products.

Universita' di Cagliari

Name of the organisation: Universita' di Cagliari Country: Italy Entity profile:
Role within the commitment: University of Cagliari is one of the leading European organization in the resin design and coupling with thermoplastic and thermose materials. University of Cagliari will support in the definition of the composite materials, both from CFRP/GFRP, ABS and Rare Earth composite material.


Name of the organisation: Relight Country: Italy Entity profile: Private sector - SME
Role within the commitment: RELIGHT will work with ITRB to provide the research partners with residues for the recycled ABS supply and the REE recovery processes, including their HydroWEEE process as part of the processes to be studied and analyzed.

Piaggio Aerospace

Name of the organisation: Piaggio Aerospace Country: Italy Entity profile: Private sector - large company
Role within the commitment: Piaggio Aerospace is one of the project End Users (Aeronautics Industry): as such it will provide requirements and further applications that could be developed with the Consortium Materials. Piaggio will assist in the compounds selection, provide Fraunhofer with specific corrosion requirements on business jet size aircraft, and will assess that the developed materials performance fits the selected applications desired improvements.

Blackshape Aircrafts

Name of the organisation: Blackshape Aircrafts Country: Italy Entity profile: Private sector - SME
Role within the commitment: Blackshape Aircrafts is one of the project End Users (Aeronautics Industry): as such it will provide requirements and further applications that could be developed with the Consortium Materials. Blackshape will support to fulfill the requirements of the aeronautics industry on ultra light jet, light jet and trainer for Syllabus, and will assess that the developed alloys performance fits the selected applications desired improvements.

KU Leuven

Name of the organisation: KU Leuven Country: Belgium Entity profile: Academia
Role within the commitment: KUL will collaborate on the balance problem studies and will lead the rare earth recovery research with the solvometallurgical and ionometallurgical processes.
KUL will also contribute to the final compounding selection.
KUL is the Dissemination Manager of the project, promoting that all partners are active on the project Dissemination.


Name of the organisation: FIDAMC Country: Spain Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: FIDAMC is going to lead the Work Package on Compression Moulding with CFRP-enhanced materials. As part of the AIRBUS Group, FIDAMC will also be able to provide the input material.
FIDAMC successfully developed a 3D Printer of own design to serve the Aerospace Industry and will be supporting Smart Lab 3D Industries in its 3D printer design.


Name of the organisation: COMPOSITE INNOVATION CENTER Country: Canada Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: Composite Innovation Center is one of the world leading organization in the field of Composite materials, both from carbon fiber and vegetal-based fibers.
Composite Innovation center has successfully implemented, at lab-scale, recycling processes for CFRP and GFRP.

Existing EU Contribution: Yes

Period to implement the commitment: from 01-01-2014 to 31-12-2020