Edition 2012 SMA 2012 The Society of Mineral Analysts Annual Conference will be held September 18th-20th at the Elko Convention Center in Elko, Nevada. New this year will be several smaller "breakout" sessions with smaller, up-close demonstrataions and training for assayers and technicians. There will also be technical papers presented on new instruments, techniques, health and safety, IT and ISO. Registration for attendees and exhibitors can be done from the SMA’s website at:
www.sma-online.org Speakers include: • Mette Dobel, FLSmidth, "Things to Consider when Automating Mineral Processing Lab" • Aaron Walczewski, LECO Corporation: “Advances in Carbon and Sulfur Determination by Combustion Improve Performance, Operation and Convenience” • Carmen Dews, ThermoFisher Scientific: “Analysis of Au in a High Na Matrix by Quadrupole ICPMS” • Jim Force, Newmont Mining/Perkin-Elmer: “Improving Sample Throughput at Carlin Lab with the Perkin-Elmer Optima FAST ICP” • Doug Shrader, Ph.D., Agilent Technologies: “MP-AES” • James Craner, MD, MPH, Occupational Medicine specialist "Measuring Hearing Conservation Program Effectiveness in the Assay Laboratory" • Paul Bianchetti, Microlab Service: ,"Microbalances, Then and Now" • John Winterbottom, AssayNet, “LIMS” • Andrew Kavan, Elemental Scientific: "Automated Sampling Analysis" • Dr. George Duncan, A & A Environmental: "Lab Environmental"
Breakout Session- smaller, shorter, hands-on sessions to demonstrate products and ideas. Moderator: Mark Lewis • Respirator Fit Testing for the Assay Laboratory: Concepts and Caveats, James Craner, MD, MPH, Occupational Medicine specialist • Analyzing Mercury, Dave Jarvis, Perkin-Elmer • Hamilton ML625-DIL, Don Robertson, Hamilton Company • Calibrating Balances, George Cahill, QC Services • AA Fault Finding and Rededies, Margaret Roderick, Agilent Technology
August 2012 Panel Discussion Moderator: Dave Francisco Topic: Vendor / Supplier Challenges, Issues and Future Plans Panel Group: Vendor / Suppliers Potential Topics: Challenges that you face in reaching your clientele Issues that you are facing as a vendor Plans for your company’s product future How can the SMA support your efforts
SMA – The Early Years by Jack Simmons I was asked a few months ago to recall the early years of the Society of Mineral Analysts, where did the idea come from and how it was organized. Tough for a guy that can’t remember what happened last week let alone 25 years ago. In 1982 I saw an article in the American Chemical Society magazine announcing a Canadian Mineral Analysts conference scheduled to be held in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Working for a Canadian mining company at the time (weren’t we all) I received permission for a trip to Thunder Bay. I had attended a number of conferences and workshops over the years but none compared to the eye opener at my first CMA. Everyone in the room was involved in the same activities with the same problems that I was seeing in my lab. The hospitality and friendship offered to us will never be forgotten. We have made friends with many of the CMA attendees at that conference and are still close today. I was able to attend the meetings in Canada for the next several years. The CMA conferences are held all over the country so we were able to travel to places we would probably never had seen. At a CMA meeting in 1985 I offered to host a meeting in Nevada but the membership felt that mine management would not look approvingly at an out of country conference. So the next step was to form a group of our own. With the close assistance of my good friend Paul Corona from Battle Mountain we sent letters inviting lab people to attend a meeting in Winnemucca on March 8, 1986 to assess the interest in forming an analytical society. An excellent incentive in Nevada is to schedule a pre-meeting cocktail session. So I contacted acquaintances willing to sponsor an open bar, Paul Bianchetti, Microlab and Glenn Pattie, Intermountain Lab stepped up. I also asked Paul Hansen and Sean Murry from Chemonics (later Anachemia) to come down from British Columbia to offer advice from the Canadian Mineral Analysts. I cannot recall exactly how many attended the organizational meeting but it was somewhere @
30 lab interested people. I was elected to be the first president, Randy Sturgell vice-president and Paul Corona was the secretary/treasurer. We came out of that meeting with the basics for a society and a committee to plan the first conference the following February in Elko. Gerry Scott was the first conference chairman with a committee of Elko members assisting for a great first conference. There were more than 150 attendees at that conference. I received the ok at the Elko conference to propose a joint meeting with the CMA the following November. Even though Winnemucca is difficult to travel to if you are not from Nevada there were 247 attendees at that conference. I looked at the 1987 conference proceedings to refresh my memories of the early days. It is amazing how many people from the very first conference are still active in the society. It was also sad to see the names of members who have passed on. The SMA has been an asset to the assay profession for the past 25 years through the ups and downs of the mining industry and we all hope it continues for many more.
SMA 25th Anniversary Coin by Dave Francisco Each atendee at this years conference will receive a special commerative coin to celebrate the 25th year of the Society of Mineral Analysts. This coin is 2 inches in diameter and features the SMA logo on one side with the aniversary dates on the back. Be sure and attend the conference so you can stake your claim to your once in a lifetime symbol.
Sad News by Jack Simmons Recently I visited the Freeport guys over in Safford, AZ. Sadly they informed me that Ramon Camacho had passed away. I had lunch with Ramon last year and he was his normal happy self. Too bad he was a good guy and only 56 years old. Many will remember that Ramon was the Chairman of the Yuma SMA conference.
New Direction for Newsletter by Mark Lewis It has become more and more difficult to have enough material for the old style, print newsletter. We have discussed moving the newsletter to a "forum based" model, either on the SMA website, or on an external website. This would require several individuals to act as moderators and take an interest. If the SMA website was not a suitable location the FIREASSAYS.COM forum is available to add a SMA forum for posting of articles, questions, conference details, etc. I am the moderator of this forum and can easily set this up with the proper interest and additional moderators. Any interested moderators should contact me: mLewis@Lmine.com. Current forum areas are:
• • • • • • • •
Fire Assay Refining, Smelting ICP Atomic Absorption Carbon Sulfur Analysis Sampling Crushing and Pulverizing Sizing, Screening, splitting
We also have an Occupational Health and Safety forum moderated by Dr. James Craner featuring forums on:
• Lead • Silica • Noise
Conference Banquet by Christine Openshaw Be sure to attend the Conference Banquet on Wednesday, September 19th at 6:30 PM. We will celebrate 25 years of SMA with food, friends, entertainment and prizes.