First listed on: 18 June 2020

Research Director, Mineral Processing 

The Opportunity

  • Lead CSIRO’s world class Mineral Processing Research Program
  • Deliver innovative and cutting-edge science to a dramatically changing industry
  • Lead engagement and collaborative partnerships across the mining sector

CSIRO Mineral Resources has an exciting opportunity for an experienced leader to lead a large cohort of scientists who deliver enabling research of major value to the minerals processing industry whilst also being committed to delivering innovative and cutting-edge science to an industry that is changing dramatically. This role forms part of the executive team for the Mineral Resources Business Unit made up of 6 programs working collaboratively.

CSIRO has a well-established record of engagement with the mineral processing and METS industries and delivers significant innovation and cutting-edge technologies across the value chain. Contributed technologies include dry slag granulation for the steelmaking and nickel smelting industry; engineering design of impellor technology for lower-energy mixing of ore slurries in tanks; building a pilot demonstration plant to produce high quality nickel sulphate for the emerging battery metals industry, and delivering processes for the production of “green” graphite. Multiple technologies have been commercialised in recent years, e.g. cyanide and mercury-free process for recovering gold – Clean Mining; science-based approach to industry’s social license to operate (spun out as Voconiq); and several more are expected to be commercialised over the next 5 years.

The Program is at the forefront of innovation towards a low-impact and environmentally sustainable minerals industry. Research is currently focused on:

  • Hydrometallurgy: unlocking Australia’s more challenging ores through environmentally sustainable extraction and recovery of base and precious metals from challenging ores.
  • Low carbon steel: steel and magnesium metal production processes including environmentally responsible technologies such as renewable carbon for steelmaking; recovery of magnesium from fly ash; game-changing carbothermal reduction of magnesia.
  • Process engineering: optimisation of mineral processing mixing and separation in multi?phase flow environments using component design based on computational fluid dynamics, in-line monitoring, and sensors.

Your duties will include:

  • Through demonstrated deep knowledge of the challenges of the mineral processing industry, provide strategic direction and a clear focus for the Processing program that results in world class research and tangible industry outcomes.
  • In consultation with stakeholders in the mining and METS sectors and in the research community, develop and continually review CSIRO's mineral processing research and development strategy.
  • Be a driver of change to bring added value through refining and processing of mineral ores whilst delivering environmentally, socially and economically sustainable low impact mineral processing.
  • Lead engagement with mining and related METS companies with a view to developing collaborative or one-on-one projects.
  • Lead engagement with cross-CSIRO initiatives, notably the Critical Energy Metals Mission, ensuring that the program is well placed to be a key contributor.

Location:  Waterford, WA or Clayton, Victoria
Salary:  An attractive salary package including up to 15.4% superannuation
Tenure:  Specified term of 3 years
Reference:  67681

To be considered you will need:

This position would suit a leader with an entrepreneurial focus who can pursue new business models, including creation of new companies, spin offs and licensing, and translate science to deliver industry impact. They should be familiar with the level of digital maturity in the industry and recognise opportunities to initiate innovative and disruptive change through use of sensors and digital approaches to align the Program with future trends in the industry.

The Research Program Director has a critical role in building the research capability to enable the program to build on its strengths and evolve to meet new challenges. They will also work to bring in new business models for sustainable revenue and seek new opportunities to build strong external partnerships.

For full details about this role please view the Position Description


The successful applicant will be required to obtain and provide a National Police Check or equivalent.

Flexible Working Arrangements

We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work.  Talk to us about how this role could be flexible for you.  Balance

Diversity and Inclusion

We are working hard to recruit diverse people and ensure that all our people feel supported to do their best work and feel empowered to let their ideas flourish.  Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

We are committed to the safety and wellbeing of all children and young people.


At CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology. 

Join us and start creating tomorrow today!

How to Apply

Please apply on-line and provide a cover letter and CV that best demonstrate your motivation and ability to meet the requirements of this role.

Applications Close

16 July 2020, 11:00 pm AEST/AEDT

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