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Rich Gold in South Korea

Hear how the AusIMM November Technical Lunch went with Paul Wittwer

The AusIMM November Technical Lunch kicked off at the Carrington Function Centre on the 21st of November. Paul Wittwer, an Exploration Manager for Southern Gold Ltd, presented a talk on Precious Metal Renaissance in South Korea and Brayden Sturm delivered a presentation on the key takeaways from the 2019 New Leaders Conference and National Mining Games.

Prior to Paul’s presentation, Brayden, a fourth year Chemical Engineering and Finance student at the University of Adelaide, and a current award recipient of the Education Endowment Fund (EEF) Scholarship from the AusIMM, gave a recap on his recent trip to Perth. Brayden, along with 13 other University of Adelaide students, flew to Perth in early October and attended the 2019 New Leaders Conference. The Conference started off with an interactive workshop on building emotional intelligence, which allowed delegates from all over the country to interact and discuss. There were then discussions and presentations on future artificial intelligence, technical mining opportunities, equality in the work place and building online presence. The second day opened with a panel of past EEF scholarship recipients, which gave the delegates a great insight into their lives and the pathways they have travelled through the minerals industry. The New Leaders Conference presented a fantastic opportunity for delegates to form connections to other young leaders from around the country and to network with current employees from the minerals industry.

Brayden discussed the Adelaide teams performance at 2019 Mining games. With tough competition, the two Adelaide teams placed second and third overall. The National Mining Games allowed the competitors to attempt old and new mining methods in a supported environment. Events included; Swede saw, blast face tie in, Mineral Identification, Mucking, Rail set, Gold panning and Air legging. The Mining Games originated in the US and was to commemorate victims of the 1972 Sunshine Mine tragedy and all subsequent lives lost in our industry.

Overall, the New Leaders Conference and National Mining Games enabled the delegates to network and grow their skills for their future in the Minerals Industry. Thank you to Brayden for that fantastic insight into the Adelaide students’ trip to Perth.


Paul Wittwer’s presentation covered the interesting opportunities in South Korea. Historically the Korean peninsula was a well-known gold-rich region with a growth in gold mining during Japanese occupation. However, government cut backs in the mining industry saw closures of many mines and a heavy focus on military, agriculture and manufacturing. This history of gold rich-regions proved to be what drew Southern Gold to this prospective area.

South Korea lies on a tectonic continuum between China and Japan, indicating a target rich environment. With the understanding of epithermal mineral systems developing over the past 25 to 30 years, the target rich environment Southern Golds interest has first movers advantage. Southern Gold are about 7 years ahead of competitors due to their acquisition of precursor company Asiatic gold. They have local expertise, brilliant technical staff and direction and management from experienced expats.

November’s Technical Lunch had a fantastic turn out and was incredibly engaging. Brayden’s presentation gave a great insight into some of the opportunities that current University students have when involving themselves with AusIMM. The New Leaders conference in Perth sounded informative and relevant to industry and the 2019 Mining Games seemed to be an incredible experience. Congratulations to both Adelaide teams for placing second and third overall. Paul’s talk on precious metals in South Korea explained that areas of focus have a long history of gold mining but, have seen little modern exploration methods or any recent mine developments. The areas of interest for Southern Gold Pty have world-class exploration targets with very high discovery potential of high-grade gold-silver epithermal systems. This seems like a very exciting prospect for Southern Gold and I look forward to seeing how mining in South Korea progresses.

Finally, I would like to thank our branch partners Oz Minerals and Bureau Veritas. Our Technical lunch partner, Thermo Fisher Scientific and our media partner, Heathgate. I would also like to extend a large thank you to Thermo Fisher Scientific for donating their complementary ticket for me to attend the Technical Lunch. It was a successful event and I urge all members to look at the upcoming AusIMM events in the new year.

Elyse Bosch – Thermo Fisher Scientific Complementary Ticket Attendee


Media Partner 2019

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