The 2024 MinSouth Branch Young Person’s Lecture Competition was a remarkable display of intellectual prowess, featuring some of the most brilliant minds and their pioneering research. Esteemed judges and exceptional contestants from premier institutions added prestige to the occasion.

Alex Vickers from the University of Oxford, Vanda Karpati of Imperial College, and Erin Thompson from the University of Leicester distinguished themselves with their eloquent presentations. Their research topics were as diverse as they were intriguing, covering ‘Natural Hydrogen: A New Frontier‘, ‘Evaluating Europe’s Mining Renaissance‘, and ‘The magmatic controls on Ni-Cu-PGE mineralisation in the Platreef‘, respectively. Abstracts for these presentations can be accessed by selecting the title links provided.

The competition awarded £250 to the first-place winner, while the runners-up each received £125. The judging panel, consisting of Michael Forrest from MinSouth, Jake Cain at Sibanye London, and Andrew Thake from Resourcing Tomorrow, brought invaluable expertise and critical assessment to the event, ensuring its high standards. The picture below shows both the judges in their respective position beside the competitors.

Although she was not featured in the celebratory photograph, Lara Tritton’s presence at this year’s event was no less significant. As last year’s champion from the University of Leicester, she returned to the competition in a new role, that of a judge. Her insights and evaluations were as influential as her previous victory.

Lara’s expertise in the field of critical metals was evident in her presentation last year titled ‘Sourcing critical metals Te, Bi and W as by-products from Björkdal Gold Mine, Sweden.’ For those interested in delving deeper into her research, an abstract is readily accessible through the title link provided.

The competition culminated with Alex Vickers earning the title for his exceptional discourse on natural hydrogen, heralding a promising avenue in energy resources. The image below captures the momentous occasion of his commendation by Andrew Thake.