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Mill Operators Conference 2024

Elevating Mill Operations: An exclusive Q&A with Organising Committee Co-Chair, David Seaman

ยท 850 words, 3 minute read

As we approach the abstract deadline for Mill Operators 2024, we had the privilege to sit down with David Seaman, the esteemed Co-Chair of the Organising Committee.

David Seaman, Conference Co-Chair

Manager Directional Studies & Innovation, Newcrest Mining Ltd
We'd like to introduce the Mill Operators Conference 2024 Organising Committee and thank them for their time, effort and dedication to develop and deliver an outstanding conference program in 2024.

With a finger on the pulse for industry innovation, David shares his perspectives on the abstract submissions that will shape #MillOps2024; a world-class technical program that remains focused on showcasing new or modified processing plants, technology and best practices.

In the interview David shares how the Committee stands as a pillar of support for authors, discusses his curiosity for new technologies and interdisciplinary approaches, particularly those from data-science fields and AI, and how they can enhance the mill operations discourse, plus provides his advice on submitting a compelling abstract.

What emerging trends or innovative topics within mill operations you are particularly interested in seeing addressed in the abstracts?

A common theme amongst the popular papers at Mill Ops are seeing how operations are adopting new technologies and updating their flowsheets to improve efficiency. It is always great to hear from operations that have completed innovative brownfield expansions using novel technologies which really helps give others the confidence to adopt similar approaches.

One particular interest to me is the uptake of innovative flotation machines targeting specific areas of the particle size and liberation spectrum. There is certainly a lot of activity in both high intensity fines flotation as well as coarse particle flotation. Our entire industry has made ambitious commitments towards reduced emissions and these technologies are one of the main keys to economically reducing specific energy in our current and future plants.

Is there encouragement for the submission of abstracts that involve interdisciplinary approaches or collaborations with other fields?

Absolutely! There is a lot of hype in the industry around digital, AI and machine learning. Mining companies are seeing more data scientists enter the field of minerals processing.

Within my own company, I have seen great advantages in automating reporting, digital dashboards for process tracking and improved operating discipline as well as the use of data analytics in driving continuous improvement. I hope there are some groups out there who are open to sharing their experiences at the conference.

We also often see interesting geomet papers, and innovative tailings storage solutions is a growing area of interest too.

What advice do you give those aiming to submit a strong and compelling abstract for #MillOps2024?

Dust off the last proceedings to get some inspiration, or talk to your colleagues about the exciting projects and initiatives you have been involved in.

A lot of emphasis on the paper selection is placed on the presentation of case studies from operating mines, we love to see shareable outcomes with statistically based data analysis supporting hypotheses and conclusions. The audience loves to understand the overall context of what is being offered in the paper.

Also, don’t be afraid to reach out to any of the committee members for some advice, we are more than happy to have a quick read of a draft and offer some suggestions.

Why is this conference so important for industry, and what benefits would a prospective author gain by sharing their ideas?

Mill Ops has grown significantly over the years and is now one of, if not the biggest worldwide gathering of minerals processers’. The tradeshow is second to none and is an excellent opportunity for operations professionals to meet and interact with suppliers and service providers. 

Prospective authors have a lot to gain by sharing their ideas; it is a really good way to get your name out into industry and be recognised for your contributions. Plus, I believe promoting your exciting work is also a great way to attract high calibre talent to join your team or company.

The process of writing a good technical paper is a great professional development exercise and an excellent opportunity for your work to be peer reviewed by other SME’s in the industry.

Can you quickly summarise the expectations of the committee when submitting an abstract?

The committee encourages abstracts that are a collaboration between METS or applied academics and operations personnel. Sharing specific case studies is a great way to demonstrate and showcase technologies or innovations with data and case study examples.  We do not encourage purely advertorial papers or those that do not give context to an operation(s).   

Publication at #MillOps2024 is highly competitive as we are focused on keeping presentations to single sessions, with plenty of time for discussion at the conclusion of the sessions.

Submit your abstract by 11 September for your chance to share your knowledge and present at the 16th iteration of Mill Operators Conference 2024.

Submit an abstractView all conferences calling for abstracts

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