ETN & EIT Summer School “To mine or not to mine”

On September 10-12, 2018, the Summer School “To mine or not to mine – A multi-criteria assessment of the landfill mining of municipal and industrial solid waste deposits” is organised in Leuven (Novotel). The Summer School is a joint initiative of the EU Horizon 2020 projects ETN SOCRATES and ETN NEW-MINE, in collaboration with the EIT KIC IMAGINE programme. Further support is provided by SIM² KU Leuven, EURELCO and the Arenberg Doctoral School (Leuven, 29-3-2018) (credits image: EIT RawMaterials)

Rationale for the Summer School

Resource scarcity, climate change and increased pressure on environment and health necessitate the transition from a fossil-based, linear economy to a low-carbon, circular economy. What was considered as waste in the past, becomes a resource for tomorrow. Increasing attention is given to the possibility of mining and/or reprocessing of municipal and industrial solid waste deposits. But is it really feasible to mine these secondary deposits? Do we have the appropriate technology? Is it economically feasible to do this? Does the mining of these deposits indeed contribute to a safer environment and health situation? Does it lead to a new CO2 reductions? And do people want a mining project “in their backyard”?


On September 10-12, 2017, the joint ETN SOCRATES, ETN NEW-MINE & EIT KIC IMAGINE summer school will be organised in Leuven, Belgium. The Summer School aims at offering an integral approach for the assessment of landfill mining projects. The interdisciplinary training programme aims at going beyond technical assessment, offering an approach to determine the value of landfill mining from an economic, environmental, social and policy  perspective. Two landfill types will be studied, being municipal solid waste landfills (NEW-MINE) & industrial monolandfills, containing e.g.  mine tailings, metallurgical sludges, ferrous and non-ferrous slags and bottom ashes (SOCRATES).

Preliminary Programme

During the summer school, lectures will be organised in the morning sessions; in the afternoon interactive group exercises are scheduled.

  • Day 1 – 10/9/2018: Multi-criteria assessment of Enhanced Landfill Mining Projects – An interdisciplinary training programme for ELFM projects – Karel Van Acker (KU Leuven), Steven Van Passel (University of Antwerp and Hasselt University) and Niclas Svensson (Linköping University).
  • Day 2 – 11/9/2018: Industrial flow sheeting and thermo-economic assessment. Markus Reuters – HZDR
  • Day 3 – 12/9/2018: From the lab to the market, business development & commercialisation. Christina Meskers – Umicore.

Full programme and registration

A more detailed programme will be launched by Mid April. By then the registration module for the Summer School will also be activated. The Summer School is open to PhD students, postdocs and senior researchers of academia and industry. Due to logistical reasons participation is limited to 15 persons from outside the NEW-MINE and SOCRATES projects. Total amount of participants is limited to 50.

Main organisers

NEW_MINE_LOGO_2 slider_fETN NEW-MINE: NEW-MINE is the EU Training Network for Resource Recovery Through Enhanced Landfill Mining. As a EU Horizon 2020 MSCA-ETN project, NEW-MINE trains 15 early-stage researchers (ESRs) in all aspects of landfill mining, in terms of both technological innovation and multi-criteria assessments. The technological innovation follows a value-chain approach, from advanced landfill exploration, mechanical processing, plasma/solar/hybrid thermochemical conversion and upcycling, while the multi-criteria assessment methods allow to compare combined resource-recovery/remediation ELFM methods with the “Do-Nothing”, “Classic remediation” and “Classic landfill mining with (co-)incineration” scenarios. By training the ESRs in scientific, technical and soft skills, they become highly sought-after scientists and engineers for the rapidly emerging landfill-mining and broader raw-materials industries of Europ

SOCRATES Logo v3.2ETN SOCRATES: SOCRATES is the European Training Network for the Sustainable, zero-waste valorisation of critical-metal-containing industrial process residues. SOCRATES targets ground-breaking metallurgical processes, incl. plasma-, bio-, solvo-, electro- and ionometallurgy, that can be integrated into environmentally friendly, (near-)zero-waste valorisation flow sheets. As a basis for a concerted effort to strengthen the EU’s critical-metal supply chain for Ge, In, Ga and Sb, SOCRATES trains 15 early-stage researchers (ESRs) in technological innovation: metal extraction (WP1), metal recovery (WP2), residual matrix valorisation (WP3) and integrated assessment (WP4). By training the ESRs in scientific, technical and soft skills, they are the next generation of highly employable scientists and engineers in the raw-materials sector.

EIT_Banner-720x300-ZincEIT KIC IMAGINE: IMAGINE is an EIT RawMaterials KIC Education project. IMAGINE stands for the Development and implementation of EIT RawMaterials Master Programme(s) in Sustainable Materials. The consortium proposes a ‘fast track’ pilot action involving the integration of 4 existing Master programmes into an EIT label compatible pilot master programme on which the partners can build a joint final Master programme. The Master programmes will focus on materials processing and recycling, circular (eco)design, life cycle engineering and circular economy design, materials substitution, manufacturing, entrepreneurship and innovation and will mandatorily involve studies in two different institutions and internship in a company.

Other co-organisers

EURELCO, SIM² KU Leuven, Arenberg Doctoral School


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