Scholarship & bursary recipients

The following people have received scholarship or bursary awards from IOM3.


Andrew Carnegie Research Fund: Dan Graham

Dan Graham received £250 from the Institute’s Andrew Carnegie Research Fund to put towards attending the 18th International Conference on Composite Materials.

Dan explains, ‘The conference was held in South Korea from 21–26 August, where over 1,600 participants attended from an estimated 49 countries. There were around 1,000 oral presentations and 300 poster presentations distributed over 197 sessions.

‘As a second year EngD student, I was representing both the University of Surrey and my sponsor, BAE Systems. This was the first specialist materials conference I had been to, and was set to deliver my first paper, “A Hybrid Joining Scheme for High Strength Multi-material Joints”. The paper and presentation were well received, and I was able to make use of a number of networking opportunities.

‘I was also pleased to be able to immerse myself in the state-of-the-art throughout the week, and brought back a number of useful ideas that may shape the future of my work. The conference was certainly worth the trip, and I am grateful to the University of Surrey, BAE Systems and the Andrew Carnegie Research Fund for making my attendance possible.’


Mining Club Award: Martin Baker

Martin Baker received a Mining Club Award to help with travel costs associated with his postgraduate studies. He outlines what the award meant to him.

‘After completing my undergraduate Geology degree at the Royal School of Mines in 2007, finishing third in the year, personal circumstances led me to work for a contaminated land consultancy in Kent. Although I enjoyed the work, and gained valuable organisational and report-writing skills, there was no real geological aspect to the job. I therefore applied to the Camborne School of Mines for a place on its MSc Mining Geology for 2009/10.

‘As part of the course, I studied advanced mineral resource assessment, mineral extraction, management and the environmental impact of mining, ore deposit geology, industrial minerals, and techniques in mining geology. I have recently completed my dissertation – a study and development of methods for computer-based estimation of iron resources. Geostatistics and resource estimation is of particular interest to me as it allows excellent crossover of mathematical and computing skills in the application of geology.

‘On completion of the course I would like to focus on resource estimation, but I feel it would also be beneficial to work as an exploration or mine-site geologist. I have already made enquiries with companies and operators in the UK, Africa and Australia, and am engaged in a temporary contract to supervise the drilling and installation of deep groundwater monitoring boreholes following an accidental loss of domestic heating oil which impacted on a major chalk aquifer in Kent.

‘The received funds from the Institute were used towards the cost of travel to Australia to undertake fieldwork. The purpose of the trip was to visit different metalliferous and industrial mineral operations in a world-class mining region to observe –

  • The geology and deposits of the region.
  • Exploration methods.
  • Resource and reserve modelling methods.
  • Mining, production and processing methods.
  • Environmental practices.


'This involved visits to the Bunbury, Collie, Perth, Kalgoorlie and Koolyanobbing areas of Western Australia, taking in a bauxite operation at Alcoa, mineral sands in the Perth Basin area, coal and brick clay quarries, as well as nickel, iron ore and gold operations. I also visited The Western Australia School of Mines.

‘Being self-funded and working on a tight budget, the Mining Club Award allowed me to attend Camborne’s Masters course. The fieldwork report of approximately 16,000 words was completed on 1 May and received a mark of 80% (a distinction). It is unlikely that I would have been able to afford the fieldwork costs without the Award. I am very grateful to have received the award, as it has enabled me to continue my studies and enhance my geological knowledge.

‘I have a strong and prestigious academic record of which I am very proud, and with this assistance I am on target to achieve a distinction for my Masters degree and continue my professional development.’


Mining Club Award 2009: Victoria Vry

Victoria Vry, Imperial College London, received the Institute’s 2009 Mining Club Award, which helped finance her PhD ‘Geological and Hydrothermal Fluid Evolution of El Teniente, Chile’.

She says, ‘Due to my interest in the mining industry and my decision to pursue a PhD at Imperial College on the subject, I joined IOM3 in 2006. From adverts in Materials World and the website I found out about the various awards the Institute offers for postgraduate study in the field of mining geology. The scope of each award is fairly broad, meaning students researching a range of topics are eligible, and assistance for fieldwork, attending conferences and visits to international laboratories is available.

‘My 2009 award, and various others from the IOM3 over the last three years [including the G Vernon Hobson Bequest 2008 and the Edgar Pam Fellowship 2007], enabled me to conduct essential fieldwork at the El Teniente porphyry copper deposit in central Chile, in collaboration with CODELCO División El Teniente. From a personal perspective, support like this is essential to ensure young researchers are able to pursue novel scientific ideas and activities that make a significant difference to their research output and future careers – in my case by actually being able to visit the deposit in Chile, collect samples and make my own observations. Being able to meet industry geologists on site provided a completely different perspective on the applied relevance of my project and research results.

‘The awards I received provided opportunities that would [otherwise not have been possible], for example, I was able to spend a year working with the Ore Deposit Formation Group at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Ore Deposits at the University of Tasmania, carrying out state-of-the-art analytical work.

‘My PhD study consists of two components – development and validation of the 213nm laser ablation inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) technique for quantitative single fluid inclusion analysis, with emphasis on developing appropriate external calibration methods, and the application of LA-ICP-MS to determine ore fluid chemistry from El Teniente. I used vein and breccia matrix samples collected during a five-month field study to document geological relationships between intrusion, vein and breccia types to produce a well constrained vein and breccia paragenesis and geological model.

‘One of the biggest limitations for the production of accurate and reproducible LA-ICP-MS fluid inclusion data is the use of a suitable external standard reference material. This study helps develop the technique by investigating microwell-hosted solutions as an alternative calibration method. The objectives were to produce a practical solution to calibration of fluid inclusion LA-ICP-MS microanalysis using a matrix-matched, customisable standard that could be analysed with good reproducibility.

‘My study presents a review of the geology and classification of host rocks at El Teniente, together with detailed field observations of vein, breccia and intrusion crosscutting relationships. The purpose was to produce a revised deposit-scale vein chronology, characterise vein types in terms of mineralogy, alteration and texture, provide robust geological controls on the relative timing of intrusions, brecciation and veining, and test and develop existing models for mineralisation.

‘[I examined] approximately 7,000m of core from 30 carefully selected drillholes from eight cross-sections across the deposit at a range of depths. These observations were augmented with underground examination of key localities. Cross-cutting relationships between the multiple vein types, breccias and intrusions were described, photographed and sampled’.


Bosworth Smith Trust, Edgar Pam Fellowship and the G Vernon Hobson Bequest: Esra Gormus

Esra Tunc Gormus received Institute scholarships to help support her PhD research. A self-funded student at the University of Bristol, she has been awarded three scholarships (Bosworth Smith Trust, Edgar Pam Fellowship and the G Vernon Hobson Bequest).

She said, ‘I am extremely grateful to IOM3 for enabling me to carry on pursuing my dream of becoming a scientist in the remote sensing field. I believe that IOM3 is doing the most important thing in the world – investing in people. Without contributors like IOM3, many students such as myself would be unable to pursue our dreams’. She hopes to one day become part of an organisation like IOM3.

Esra received her BSc and MSc degrees from the Geomatics Engineering Department of Karadeniz Technical University, Turkey. Her PhD in the Electrical and Electronic Engineering Department at the University of Bristol covers image processing – the statistical-based fusion of optical (multi spectral and panchromatic), and Synthetic Aperture Radar images to gain relevant information for applications such as environmental monitoring, mineral mapping and land cover classification.

Efficient image fusion has yet to be achieved. The successful fusion of images acquired from different modalities or instruments would increase the interpretation and discrimination capacity of a scene not obtainable with data from a single sensor.

Satellite images are important for environmental studies to provide cost-effective and complementary data to conventional geodetic techniques. While optical images use sensors with good spatial and spectral resolution, which helps generate reliable maps, the all weather capability and wavelength range of radar images means they can provide information about targets normally hidden by trees, brush and other ground cover. Combining these two sensors will help to tolerate the deficiencies in the fused image. Esra is hoping to develop an image fusion method which increases the interpretation and classification of the single scene compared to other methods.