September 2021 - Summer School "From Dredging to Deep-Sea Mining"
Striving for independence from the import of Critical Raw Materials, the EU has been making considerable investments towards reaching marine mineral resources. Recent EU projects such as Blue Mining, Blue Nodules, MIDAS, VAMOS, as well as numerous national and international programmes on exploration and exploitation of seabed minerals enabled making considerable progress towards the establishment of European deep-sea mining industry, which has a potential of creating a hundreds-billion market and thousands of new jobs. The current knowledge about deep-sea mining and particularly about the impact of mining activities on the marine environment is quite diversified and often contradictory. This is not conducive to the acceptance of seabed mining by society due to the absence of a clear and holistic picture of seabed mining and its possible environmental footprint. The DSM-School project is aiming to become a platform for the elaboration and dissemination of knowledge in deep-sea mining to increase awareness of wider society on marine mineral resources, state-of-the-art mining technologies, recent investigations on the environmental impact of seabed mining activities, as well as economic, political, social and legislative aspects. The project brings together leading universities, research organizations, and industry professionals to reach the wider society by using different communication tools such as a two-week summer school organized in Germany, the Netherlands and Norway, the Internet, and public events. The DSM-School project assumes to be turned into a long-term, self-sustainable and Europe-wide initiative for the dissemination of knowledge and boosting research and innovations.
At this year’s online Green Tech Jam, the solution of the challenge “Circular Economy meets Distributed Ledger – a transparent PET bottle product cycle” set by the Montanuniversität Leoben (involved institutes: Resources Innovation Center & Industrial Logistics), which was developed by an interdisciplinary team of students, won the first place. The team “sixpack” was supervised by the Chair of Industrial Logistics during the 24-hour challenge and consisted of three Slovenian students from Graz University of Technology as well as three Montan students. They were able to prevail against 7 other teams, each of which worked on one of 6 different challenges provided by the companies t-matix, BDI, Komptech and AI.engineer as well as the Climate and Energy Fund, and us.
In the Android app developed by the team “sixpack”, QR codes attached to bottles can be scanned and information about the bottles retrieved from the distributed data storage. The path of the bottle – from PET production to the supermarket – is displayed graphically on a map and unconventional energy comparisons with more or less everyday activities (e.g. the duration of headbanging during a concert) are carried out and visualised.
At the interdisciplinary Hackathon under the slogan “Code & Concept for a greener future” organised by the Green Tech Cluster Austria together with the Climate Change Center Austria (CCCA) and Graz University of Technology,8 teams of students from different disciplines and different european universities had around 24 hours to work on a problem relating to the topics of climate and the environment and to present a digital solution for it. In total 36 international students participated at this event. The MUL challenge also competed as part of one of two Climathon challenges at the Green Tech Jam. Climathon is a global climate hackathon under the umbrella of EIT Climate-KIC.
The game of “The Briefcase of mineral applications” aims to familiarise the player with the minerals that are used in the manufacture of everyday objects. The specific target audience are primary and secondary schools which include from 6 to 18-year-old students and their teachers. The project is orientated for Wider Society Learning (WSL) and aims to raise students’ knowledge of mining activities and mineral applications. Given the era of a growing prevalence of online teaching and learning, we believe tools such as this one will prove to be effective and beneficial for the education of young people by using both their native and the English language.
Manuel joined RIC Leoben in January 2019. On a full-time basis, he successfully manages the MiReBooks project, “Mixed Reality Handbooks for Mining Education”, which is a 14 partner pan-European education project, with a budget of 3 Mio EUR. The project is funded by EIT RawMaterials Academy and tackles current needs and gaps in mining education regarding digitalisation of contents and concepts. (You can find more details on the project in the section “EIT Regional Center Leoben”.) Manuel obtained an MSc in mining engineering from León Mining University, Spain. After graduating from university he worked in the oil and gas service industry for many years. He opted for his current job because he felt like it was time to return to his mining roots.
At a glance
PhD-Programme Health and Safety in Mining
Four leading European mining universities are working closely together with industrial partners in order to develop a PhD-Program with a focus on increasing mine safety, using the most up to date research data and basing their studies on industry-driven, real scenarios and projects. The project aims to develop a holistic, timely and resilient PhD-Program in Health and Safety in Mining and to train a cadre of qualified professionals who can lead the future of health and safety work in the European mining industry based on a modern view of how an attractive and safe mine should be designed and organised. To achieve this objective SafeMine provides a program for qualified leaders of tomorrow’s safety and health work in mining. In the first stage, covered by this application, we intend to develop and implement a curriculum and management respective administration structure and to finally kick-off the proposed PhD-Program in Health and Safety in Mining.
01/2018 – 03/2020 EIT RawMaterials – PhD Education
Montanuniversität Leoben (Partner), Allgemeine Unfallversicherungsanstalt, Boliden Mineral, Clausthal University of Technology, Dräger Safety, Luleå University of Technology, RWTH Aachen, Veitsch-Radex;
Chair of Subsurface Engineering – Philipp Hartlieb Total: € 278.915 Montanuniversität Leoben: € 71.01