Mineralogy Technician

Mineralogy Technicians play a crucial role in the mining industry as they are responsible for identifying and classifying minerals as well as devising means as to how these minerals can be effectively retrieved and how to process them.

Typical Duties

  • Assist in research and the analysis of the quantity, quality and distribution of minerals in rock and below the earth’s surface
  • Explore potential mine areas to determine the structure and the types of minerals present
  • Make recommendations regarding specific methods of extraction
  • Operate survey equipment
  • Work closely with scientists and engineers
  • Write reports about the findings
  • Conduct laboratory test on rock and mineral samples
  • Perform chemical, heat and other tests on samples to identify them or determine their properties
  • Prepare notes, sketches, geological maps and cross sections
  • Assist engineers and geologists in the evaluation of mineral reserves
  • Conduct or assist in environmental audits
  • Operate and maintain survey equipment and create maps to help engineers and scientists who are involved in mine development programs
  • Interpret geological history from rock analysis

Working Conditions

  • A Mineralogy Technician would spent some time in the laboratory and time in the field
  • Mineralogy Technicians are often required to spend a fair amount of time away from home, often in remote areas on the mine site. Depending on the type of mine, the Minerology Technician may spend time in the open, above ground, or underground where it can be cramped and hot
  • Production sites can be remotely located and can be hot and noisy
  • Mineralogy Technicians may be required to travel and stay away from home for extended periods. They may be required to live on site away from home, or to work on a fly in fly out basis. FIFO commonly involves flying in for a certain period of time whilst the Mineralogy Technician would be on site, and then flying home for periods when they are off work
  • Minerology Technicians may get to see the world as if working for large international companies, their job will often involve international travel

Educational Requirements

  • Students interested in becoming a Mineralogy Technician should take courses in mathematics, physics, chemistry, Computers and CAD drafting
  • Mineralogy Technicians normally require a one to two year college program in mineralogy or a mineral engineering technology
  • Specialized onsite training for a specific period is required in many regions before being certified a Mineralogy Technician

Personal Attributes

  • Have excellent communication and interpersonal skills as they will be dealing extensively with engineers and technologists
  • Have an interest in working with math, science and computers
  • Have an aptitude for numbers and statistics
  • Have knowledge of chemistry, geography and physics
  • Have an interest in the environment and technology and how they can fit togethe
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  • Be able to visualise three dimensional objects from two dimensional drawings
  • Be able to embrace new techniques and technologies
  • Be able to follow strict safety regulations because their work can involve contact with dangerous chemicals
  • Have excellent problem solving skills
  • Need to be able to work with tools and instruments with precision and accuracy
  • Have a sense of adventure and be able to spend extended periods of time away from home

Compensation

  • Mineralogist Technicians can earn a good salary
  • The mining industry is notoriously well paying across the board and Mineralogist Technicians are no exception

Salary

  • Find out more about salaries here.

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