01 May, 2024

Inaugural Trailblazer Showcase

Back to news & events

On Tuesday April 30, over 120 researchers, industry partners, and academic staff members convened at Curtin University’s TL Robertson Library for the inaugural Resources Technology and Critical Minerals Trailblazer Showcase.

The event provided an opportunity to update stakeholders connected to the Trailblazer on the key achievements of the program to date since Curtin University was named as the first university nationally to receive a share of the $370 million Trailblazer Universities funding through the Australian Government Department of Education.

One such achievement was the launch of the Curtin Venture Studio, announced by Assistant Minister for Education, Senator the Hon. Anthony Chisholm. This $18.6 million initiative will provide researchers and founders with access to capital, talent, market expertise, mentorship and infrastructure to build ‘protoventures’ that will be prototyped as new enterprises based on demand driven research.

Key senior leaders were in attendance for the announcement including Curtin University Chancellor Vanessa Guthrie, Vice Chancellor Harlene Hayne, Trailblazer Directors Rohan McDougall, Rick Valenta, and Ioan Sanislav, members of the Trailblazer board Denise Goldsworthy and Larry Lopez, as well as members of the Curtin Trailblazer team.

Featuring 17 of the 24 research projects funded to date through the Trailblazer, the event was also an opportunity to demonstrate the vast and diverse group of innovative products, services and processes being developed by researchers at Curtin University, The University of Queensland, and James Cook University to advance Australia’s sovereign capabilities in critical minerals downstream processing and resources technology optimisation.

The projects on show included:

  • Development and scale-up of a commercial laboratory fluidised bed flotation cell – the JKHFmini
  • Trailblazing the Future of STEM Education with the CoRE Academy Pilot Program
  • Optimising Extraction of Tin, BoronandSecondary Minerals from Borate Deposits
  • Critical Minerals Provenance Verification
  • Vanadium Catalyst Recycling
  • Froth and pulp phase monitoring for advanced control of flotation
  • Extraction of ore body knowledge with deep learning models
  • Audio Predicted Failure
  • Isotope Fingerprinting
  • Builders at the Microscale: Harnessing Microbes for Sustainable Mining Practices
  • Geopolymers from recycled mine tailings for applications in mining: towards Net Zero emission goals
  • Implementation of low cost, sustainable cement products in the mining industry leading to a reduced carbon footprint
  • Removing Cobalt from Hardmetal Tools in Mining, Engineering & Agriculture
  • Auto-Optimisation for Maintenance Scheduling
  • RapidGraphite
  • Upscaling selective separation through High Voltage Pulse Preconcentration
  • Commercialising a new integrated pyrometallurgical ISASMELT pilot plant facility to support the recycling of critical metals and processing of complex critical minerals streams and hazardous wastes
  • Increasing recovery of Ni smelting at BHP Ni West
  • Optimisation of Cu smelting to maximise recycling co-treatment streams at BHP OD plant
  • Low carbon concrete and pavement using mining/processing wastes
  • Material for next-generation lithium-ion batteries

Further updated about these exciting research projects will be shared soon.

Latest News & Events

Diggers and Dealers Trailblazer Tours

05 July, 2024
Monday 4 – Tuesday 5 August 2024 The WA School of Mines (WASM) is set to welcome industry professionals from the resources sector for an exclusive campus tour during the highly anticipated Diggers & Dealers Conference in August. This initiative aims to foster stronger connections between academia and industry, highlighting the innovative research and educational […]

Critical Minerals Sector Briefing

20 June, 2024
On Thursday 20 June, Resources Technology and Critical Minerals Trailblazer Director Rohan McDougall fronted members of Western Australia’s mining and critical minerals sector alongside industry heavyweights Bill Beament, Angela Glover, and Raj Surendran at Business News’s Critical Minerals Sector Briefing. The panel discussed the challenges facing the critical minerals industry, including difficulties in financing projects, […]

KalClay: Leading an Eco-Cement Revolution

14 June, 2024
Curtin University Research Associate, Dr Nadia Bustos Salgado, from the Mining Rock Mechanics Group in the WA School of Mines (WASM), is undertaking groundbreaking research in the heart of Australia’s mining sector at Curtin’s Kalgoorlie campus, alongside leading Professor Ernesto Villaescusa with funding support from the Resources Technology and Critical Minerals Trailblazer. In the future, […]

A collaborative partnership between

Curtin University

The Resources Technology and Critical Minerals Trailblazer is supported by the Australian Government Department of Education through the Trailblazer Universities Program.

The Resources Technology and Critical Minerals Trailblazer acknowledges all First Nations people of the ancestral lands on which we operate. We pay our respects to all First Nations people, and to Elders past, present and emerging. We recognise their deep knowledge and their cultural, spiritual and educational practices, and aspire to learn and teach in partnership with them. We are committed to working in partnership with all Custodians and Owners to strengthen and embed First Nations’ voices and perspectives in our decision-making, now and into the future.

Contact details