Scholarship for a Newcrest-funded PhD project in Plant Operating Strategies for Tailings Management


Enrolment status New students
Student type Domestic students
Level of study Higher Degree by Research
Study area Agriculture and Environment, Engineering and Computing, Science and Mathematics
HDR funding type Living stipend scholarship, Top-up Scholarship
Scholarship value Base stipend of $27,596 per annum tax-free indexed annually, plus a stipend top-up of $10,000 per year.
Scholarship duration Three years with the possibility of two 6-month extensions in approved circumstances.
Opening date 29 July 2019
Closing date 1 September 2019

Scholarship description

The Julius Kruttschnitt Mineral Research Centre (JKMRC) is a world-renowned research and postgraduate education organisation, located at Indooroopilly in Brisbane, approximately 7 km from St Lucia, the main campus of the University of Queensland. JKMRC was established in 1970, and now forms part of the Sustainable Minerals Institute (SMI).

The mission of the JKMRC is to deliver world-class, customer-focussed education, research and technical services to the world minerals industry and allied sectors. The JKMRC has an international reputation for applied research in the areas of mineral processing and geometallurgy. It specialises in ore characterisation, mineral processing unit operations such as comminution and flotation, applied mineralogy, and the interface between mining and processing. Its emphasis on systems analysis by mathematical modelling and process simulations has led to major new methodologies in the design and optimisation of mineral processing operations. It works closely with the international minerals industry and other research providers in Australia and overseas. It has graduated in excess of 200 Masters and PhD students and won many awards for its research. It has a proven record of technology transfer through JKTech, which has significant experience in the commercial delivery of JKMRC research outcomes, particularly in simulation software and ore characterisation methodologies. 

The scholarship project

JKMRC and Newcrest are looking for an independent, bright and enthusiastic student who is excited at the prospect of conducting research in the field of Plant Operating Strategies for Tailings Management. The student will be expected to operate with a high degree of autonomy, under the guidance of the world’s top mineral processing experts.

The JKMRC has a longstanding collaborative relationship with Newcrest Mining Limited.  Newcrest is an Australian-based mining company which engages in exploration, development and mining of copper and gold. They own and run a number of operations both in Australia and around the world, including:  Cadia Valley Operations (NSW); Telfer Mine (WA); Lihir Mine (Papua New Guinea); and Gosowong (Indonesia).   

Newcrest has a firm commitment to the development and implementation of ground-breaking new technologies in mineral beneficiation, treatment and separation. This exciting project will focus specifically on the development of operational strategies in copper and gold processing plants to enable better management of tailings. This PhD project will enable Newcrest mines to realise maximum benefit from their various UQ research initiatives in the context of tailings management. The project approach will employ a staged plant analysis and operational strategy assessment program to delivers value at each stage of implementation. The focus will be to identify step-wise operational changes in Newcrest processing plants that deliver tailings management benefits in themselves. The operational strategies thus developed should also combine to provide significant overall value chain improvement in mine and plant operation.

Potential impacts and opportunities of Coarse Particle Flotation (CPF) influence on tailings management will also be a key factor within the scope of this PhD research. The project will therefore be required to collaborate closely with, and leverage off the CPF research which Newcrest is pursuing across the UQ environment, and in particular with the JKMRC. The research is expected to involve appropriate simulations, proof of concept laboratory test work and small scale practical trials where appropriate, with a focus on copper/gold mines.

The student appointed under this scholarship will form part of a group of students sponsored under the Newcrest – UQ Alliance in Sustainable Mining.  This alliance was formed as a UQ-Industry PhD Partnership (UQIPP) with the intention of conducting mining-related research projects of strategic interest to Newcrest and to develop the next generation of technical leaders for the mining industry.

Students are expected to commence in either October 2019 or January 2020 and finish within four years of commencement. The PhD supervisor for this project is Associate Professor Marcin Ziemski.


To be eligible, you must meet the entry requirements for a higher degree by research.

Applications are closed.

Before you apply

If this scholarship has rules, download and read them before applying.

How to apply

To submit an application, please visit the Graduate School's ‘How to Apply’ page. This online application is for both admission and scholarship.

Prior to applying, check your eligibility and prepare your documentation.

Please ensure that you

  1. select 'I am applying for, or have been awarded a scholarship or sponsorship'
  2. enter in the free-text field ‘JKMRC’*
  3. list the enrolling unit as the SMI
  4. enter Associate Professor Marcin Ziemski as your supervisor

* When completing the online application form, applicants must indicate that they are applying for the JKMRC-Newcrest Scholarship in the scholarship section.

Selection criteria

The successful applicant will be an outstanding and enthusiastic science or engineering graduate in possession of a Bachelor’s degree with a minimum Honours class IIB or equivalent. Applicants must have an academic background in a field or discipline relevant to mineral processing, environmental management and/or chemistry, ideally with experience in one or more areas including mine value chain analysis, minerals beneficiation and tailings management. The applicant should have experience in carrying out practical research and conducting experiments in plant and laboratory environments, with exposure tro modelling and simulation. Applicants should have the ability to work autonomously, show initiative while also building a good rapport with their peers and work across interdisciplinary fields. A strong foundation in mineral processing and mine waste management issues is highly desirable alongside strong analytical skills.

Applicants must note that applying to this position does not guarantee admission to UQ in the PhD program. The applicant who is selected to participate in the Project will be invited to apply to the Graduate School for admission to UQ. Participation in the Project and award of a scholarship is conditional on the applicant receiving an offer of admission from the Graduate School. The SMI Higher Degree by Research Office will guide the successful application through the admission application process.

Applications are closed.


Associate Professor Marcin Ziemski
Applications are closed.

Terms and conditions

Read the policy on UQ Research Scholarships.

A domestic part-time student with carer’s responsibilities, a medical condition or a disability, which prevents them from studying full time may be eligible for scholarship consideration, on a case by case basis.

Applications are closed.