SIM² KU Leuven Newsletter #4
[JULY 2016]

45 open PhD positions in 3 new EU H2020 MSCA-ETN projects
Interested in a PhD position in a premier, EU-wide Training Network? As the coordinator of three new EU Horizon 2020 ETN projects, SIM² KU Leuven has, in collaboration with its partners, 45 open PhD positions. The three projects are NEW-MINE, SOCRATES and COSMIC, which deal with respectively, Enhanced Landfill Mining of Urban Solid Waste landfills; zero-waste valorisation of low-grade industrial process residues; and process intensification. For these projects we need 45 metallurgists, material scientists, chemists, as well as chemical, environmental and mechanical engineers. Interested researchers - with a MSc degree and less than 4 years of research experience - should apply through the on-line application tools of NEW-MINE, SOCRATES and COSMIC, where all details about the positions and the attractive conditions are provided. The deadline for applicants is, resp., 30 July 2016 (for SOCRATES and NEW-MINE) and 15 September (for COSMIC). Recruitment events take place on 6 and 12 September & 10 October 2016. We kindly ask all SIM² KU Leuven stakeholders to circulate these positions to graduated MSc students.

Brand new website for SIM² KU Leuven
SIM² KU Leuven has just launched a new website. The website, which is fully dynamic and smart phone friendly, contains a multitude of features, including the top 10 papers per research line, project information, info on available equipment, open positions, news items, press articles, videos and a dynamic agenda. Please feel free to visit the new website and provide us with your input. 

New papers on critical metal extraction and recovery
A. Rout, K. Binnemans, Efficient separation of transition metals from rare earths by an undiluted phosphonium thiocyanate ionic liquid, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 18, 16039-16045 (2016) – download
J. Roosen, J. Pype, K. Binnemans, S. Mullens, Shaping of alginate-silica hybrid materials into microspheres through vibrating-nozzle technology and their use for the recovery of neodymium from aqueous solutions, Industrial & Enginereering Chemistry Research 54, 12836–12846 (2015) - download
J. Roosen, S. Van Roosendael, C.R. Borra, T. Van Gerven, S. Mullens, K. Binnemans, Recovery of scandium from leachates of Greek bauxite residue by adsorption on functionalized chitosan-silica hybrid materials, Green Chemistry 16, 2005-2013 (2016) - download

Qmineral wins prestigious Reynolds Cup
On June 7th of 2016, Qmineral received the “Reynolds Cup” at the 53rd CMS annual meeting in Atlanta (USA). The Reynolds Cup is known as “the world championship for mineral quantification”.  Qmineral was founded by Dr. G. Mertens and Prof. J. Elsen (SIM² KU Leuven). Congratulations to Qmineral!
In May 2016 SIM² KU Leuven was formally accepted as a new Member of PROMETIA. PROMETIA is an international non-profit association promoting innovation in mineral processing and extractive metallurgy for mining and recycling of raw materials. SIM² KU Leuven will bring in its expertise in the field of zero-waste valorisation of tailings and industrial process residues.

The European Training Network for the Sustainable, zero-waste valorisation of critical-metal-containing industrial process residues (SOCRATES) targets ground-breaking metallurgical processes, incl. plasma-, bio-, solvo-, electro- and ionometallurgy, that can be integrated into environmentally friendly, (near-) zero-waste valorisation flow sheets. As a basis for a concerted effort to strengthen the EU’s critical-metal supply chain for Ge, In, Ga and Sb, SOCRATES trains 15 early-stage researchers (ESRs) in technological innovation: metal extraction (WP1), metal recovery (WP2), residual matrix valorisation (WP3) and integrated assessment (WP4). Key data: Beneficiaries: KU Leuven, Leicester U., Utrecht U., U. Bonn, Freiberg U., Outotec, Kerneos, Metallo; Partner Organisations: Aalto U., VTT, Boliden Kokkola, Umicore, AVR; Budget: 3,8 million euro.
Animation film on red mud valorisation
RARE³ KU Leuven (Research Line 2 in SIM² KU Leuven) launched a brand new animation film on the zero-waste valorization of red mud (bauxite residue) landfills, featuring former MTV Star Ray Cokes. The film reveals how the red mud problem can be turned into a resource opportunity. Watch the video here
  • DEMETER Summer School on Design and Recycling of Rare-Earth Permanent Magnet Motors and Generators in Hybrid and Full Electric Vehicles - Leuven, Belgium, 24/08/2016 – 26/08/2016.  Registration still open
  • REDMUD Summer School on the production of aluminium and the zero-waste valorisation of bauxite residue - Leuven, 29/8/2016 - 31/8/2016. Registration still open
  • 10 years MRC - Leuven, 4/10/2016. Visit website here
  • 5th International Slag Valorisation Symposium, Leuven, Belgium, 3/05/2017 - 5/05/2017. Visit website here
  • 2nd Conference on European Rare Earth Resources (ERES 2017), Santorini, Greece, 28/05/2017 - 31/05/2017. Visit website here
Copyright © 2016 Dr. Peter Tom Jones - SIM² KU Leuven, All rights reserved.

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