UAF Mine Design Team Advances to Finals and Captures First Place

UPDATE: The UAF mine design team won First Place at the international SME/NSSGA mine design contest in Denver, CO. The UAF team swept finalists Kentucky (2nd place), Queens (3rd place), Virginia Tech, McGill, and West Virginia. Congratulations!

The team was featured in a Fairbanks Daily News-Miner article and UAF News.


Original Post from 1/11/2017

Congratulations to the members of the UAF mine design team “Goldstream Aggregates”, who advanced to the final round of the international SME/NSSGA Mine Design (SDC) competition. Teams from around the world participate in this contest but only the top six team move into the final round. And this year, UAF is one of them.

After being successful in 2013, this is only the second time in history that UAF is being selected to compete in the final phase 2 of this competition. The final round will be held on February 19-22, 2017 at the SME Annual Meeting in Denver, CO.

This year's student mine design team members are Alan Lipka, Ethan Trickey, Cole Snodgress, Blaze Brooks, Noriyasu Niibu, and Jordan Hildreth.


About the Student Mine Design Competition:

The SME/NSSGA Mine Design competition is split up into two stages. Phase 1 takes place at the individual universities and is overseen by a faculty advisor, who ensures that students follow the competition's rules and obey time requirements. A team of six students is given a set of information, including geological data, drill hole and core log information and market value of the resource, and is asked to design a mine within a certain time frame. The set of information given to the teams is generally based off a real world mine although an actual name or location is never revealed.

The students have a total of 21 days to develop their ideas. Within these 3 weeks, each of the students is allotted 35h to work on their assigned tasks. Each of the students usually specializes in a different section of mining, may it be geology, modeling, or machinery and equipment, for example. The final product, a technical report, is then sent off to the judges by the faculty advisor. For the members of the mine design team, this is an intense three-week period that requires juggling time between completing the assignment for the competition, classes, homework and possibly a job.

Phase 2 of the Mine Design competition expands on the initial design of phase 1. Additional blocks of information are given to the competing teams and each team is required to come up with design solutions that account for the new parameters. The teams will have two full days to formulate solutions and prepare an oral presentation of their redesign. Presentations will be given on the third day in front an audience of mining professionals and leaders of the mining industry at the SME Annual meeting.