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$2M research chair to focus on minerals research


St John’s, NF – Significant investments from both industry and government totalling more than $2 million will support a new industrial research chair for Memorial University.

Dr Steve Piercey has been appointed the NSERC-Altius Industrial Research Chair in the Metallogeny of Ores in Volcanic and Sedimentary Basins.

Established by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and Altius Minerals Corporation, the industrial research chair has received funding of $2 million from industry and government.

NSERC is providing $700,000 for the chair over a five-year period in collaboration with Altius, which will provide $750,000 in cash and in-kind support. RDC is contributing $500,000 and Memorial University will commit $235,256.

Over the next five years, Dr Piercey will focus on understanding ore deposits associated with ancient volcanoes and sedimentary environments, focused on understanding the formation of resources of copper, zinc, lead, gold, silver and uranium in these settings, to create knowledge and research tools that may be transferable to industry and applied in the search for new resources.

“Dr Piercey exhibits all of the traits that NSERC looks for in its Industrial Research Chairholders,” said Dr Suzanne Fortier, president of NSERC. “The professional and academic expertise he brings to the field of mineral deposit dispersion and exploration, along with his relationship with Altius, will provide a huge asset to Canada’s mining and natural resource sectors.”

The chair will be associated with the Department of Earth Sciences in the Faculty of Science and is aimed at understanding the formation and discovery of new mineral resources in both Newfoundland and Canada.