16 January 2024
by Alex Brinded

A £2.6mln centre to train mineral resource experts

The new centre will be a multi-institution hub for doctoral training in mineral resources.

© omid roshan/unsplash

The experts to enable the UK's transition to sustainable energy are to be trained by a consortium of academia and industry, led by the University of Leicester.

The Training and Research Group for Energy Transition Mineral Resources (TARGET) Centre's funding has been announced by the Natural Environment Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation.

University of Leicester's Centre for Sustainable Resource Extraction will provide doctoral-level training in the full lifecycle of minerals from sector leaders.

The University says the TARGET Centre will combine PhD research projects with a multidisciplinary training programme to provide skills in mineral exploration, processing, finance, policy and sustainability at all stages of a mineral’s use – from a rock in the ground to the end of a product’s useful life.

The training is to be led by a mixture of academic researchers and industry practitioners, and the parentship of the centre is claimed to include some of the most important global companies in mining, mineral analysis, environmental standards, and finance.

TARGET’s leader Dr Dan Smith, from the University of Leicester School of Geography, Geology and the Environment, says, 'TARGET is a really exciting opportunity for us to train a next generation of researchers with the skills they need to tackle some of the biggest challenges in mineral resources. How do they form? How can we find the raw materials we need? How can we process and extract them efficiently, and how can we be more sustainable whilst doing so?'

Find out more about how TARGET is recruiting its researchers, with the first cohort from October 2024.

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Alex Brinded

Staff Writer