Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Years
2019 2020 2021
Previous Archive
29 July 2019 | Story Leonie Bolleurs
Dr Martin Clark
Dr Martin Clark, the founder of the MAGIC (Multi-purpose Aerial Geological Image Classification) initiative. MAGIC can obtain geological and structural information that is critical for making informed decisions in exploration and mineral extraction processes.

Mining has historically been described as a boom-and-bust industry, where fluctuations in mineral prices could result in extreme success or bankruptcy. Successful mining companies closely monitor assets/expenditures, risks, and other parameters associated with their business to best ensure their longevity. In most mineral industries, there are a few competitors that dominate the delivery of a mineral resource. As a result, technological development, along with other factors, are critical to ensure that these companies’ business remains viable and protected.

This is according to post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Geology, Dr Martin Clark.

Drone technology: better, faster, safer

He says technological development in mining generally translates to how a company can extract a resource from the ground better, faster, and safer. 

Dr Clark believes the rapid development of drone technology represents a shift in the toolbox that mining companies can employ.

“Drones can collect a great deal of data randomly over vast or small areas within hours, historically accomplished by mapping campaigns which can last months to years. Drones can also collect data in areas which are difficult and dangerous for humans to get to. These include cliff faces or rock walls that are difficult and dangerous to get close to, as well as stretches of land where dense vegetation, inaccessible terrain, and even atmospheric dangers become factors which reduce or modify the scope of exploration work,” he said. 

Expanding application of drones

Dr Clark’s work specifically focuses on expanding the applications for which drones are used. “I assess what and how good the imaging capabilities of drones are, use the imagery to generate 3-D models to drive scientific observation, and yield results which can help companies to extract resources. This initiative is called MAGIC (Multi-purpose Aerial Geological Image Classification),” he said. 



“MAGIC aims to collect geological and structural information that is critical for making informed decisions in exploration and mineral extraction processes,” he added.

Dr Clark is not only the founder of MAGIC; he also drives multiple aspects of the initiative including education, research, and business development. 

In 2013, when he was busy with his doctorate, there was already a spark of interest in using drones to address geological questions. At that time, Dr Clark was working with remotely sensed high-resolution LiDAR imagery to better understand geological structures at the Sudbury Mining Camp in Canada. The interest became a reality in 2018, when he applied this initiative during his post-doctoral fellowship at the UFS.

Now and the future

“At present, there are no direct mining projects underway, but projects are expected to begin in 2020. Drone operation and image-analysis techniques are currently being refined for industry,” he said. 

Besides his work with drones, Dr Clark also work in the fields of structural geology, remote sensing, and geospatial data analysis.  

News Archive

Lira and Karen Zoid rock Kovsie Stage Extravaganza
2013-09-23

Joined on stage by some of Kovsies’ most talented students, award-winning artists dazzle Bloemfontein audience with show-stopping performances.
23 September 2013
Photos: Johan Roux

 

It was a proper party at this year’s Kovsie Stage Extravaganza, with red-hot performances by two of South Africa’s most celebrated artists.

Singers Lira and Karen Zoid had the audience in the Callie Human Centre at the Bloemfontein Campus on their feet with some of their greatest hits. With the artists on stage,were some of Kovsies’ most talented students, who hold their own among the two music stars.

Lira, a ten-time SAMA prize-winner, showed why she performed at US President Barack Obama's inauguration ball earlier this year. She had the audience eating from her hand with songs from her own albums, as well as from other artists. Between songs, she also offered advice to students and encouraged them to make their mark in life. "The knowledge you acquire here, will open doors for you," she told students, before singing favourite songs likeSomething inside so Strong, Rise Again and Ixesha.

Zoid, also a SAMA prize-winner, enchanted the audience with favourites like Afrikaners is Plesierig and Small world. Things heated up when she did a cover version of Johnny Clegg’s Asimbonanga with Kovsie students joining her on stage. She gave R200 to one lucky student to take his girlfriend for coffee later on.

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept