BUTLER College students sampled mining industry knowledge recently through a partnership between Murdoch University and Rio Tinto.
Students visited the university’s School of Engineering and IT last term to learn about metal extraction processes.
STEM (science, technology, engineering, maths) outreach program coordinator Graeme Thompson said demonstrations allowed high school students to learn how science applied in the real world.
“We try to challenge the students to think about continuing their studies in STEM subjects and aim for a higher level,” he said.
“We demonstrate how copper is produced from its ore, through leaching, decanting, cementation (metal displacement) and electro-winning.
“We then explain the chemistry behind these extraction processes, and relate them back to what actually happens in the minerals industry, so they get an insight into what it is like to be a metallurgist.”