Our Higher Degree by Research (HDR) projects are divided by SMI's Research Centres. Please select a Centre to explore all available projects in that category.

Many of our projects are cross-disciplinary, with advisors from different centres, giving you the benefit of a wider range of expertise.

We update this page as new projects become available. Check back to find new projects.

Project – EU Horizon Europe-funded m4mining project

As part of the m4mining international consortium, SMI has multiple PhD opportunities in the fields of geological sciences, mineral resources, environmental monitoring, drones, and application of AI and ML to hyperspectral sensing. Europe’s key funding programme for research and innovation (Horizon Europe) will support research costs, field work around Australia and opportunities to travel to Europe.

For further information, contact Associate Professor Steven Micklethwaite (s.micklethwaite@uq.edu.au)

Project – Developing critical design criteria for soil cover systems on minerals waste

The purpose of cover systems is to ensure the long-term chemical and physical stability of minerals waste storage facilities (including waste rock piles, heap leach residues, and tailings storage facilities) and to provide a suitable substrate for vegetation.

Covers are site- and material-specific and largely influenced by spatial and temporal climate variations. It means that a ‘one-size-fit-all’ approach is not suitable for cover systems. Site-specific cover designs need to be trialled and monitored for sufficient lengths of time in the context of each site. However, large-scale field trials are logistically challenging and often do not concur with mining schedules during the life of an operation.

In this project we will test a range of design criteria under controlled conditions including the depth of storage layer, the depth of vegetative layer, degree of compaction, the location and type of capillary break layer(s), cover material biochemical weathering and degradation, by subjecting the covers to a series of simulated rainfall and evaporation events. The data generated will help the industry to benchmark site specific cover designs against validated examples of typical covers before attempting field trials, rather than a means to replace field trials.

For further information, contact Associate Professor Mansour Edraki (m.edraki@cmlr.uq.edu.au) and Dr Mandana Shaygan (m.shaygan@uq.edu.au)

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Get in touch with SMI's Higher Degree by Research team .

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