Short Courses & Field Trips


 Final Preregistration Brochure










Using the Standardized Reclamation Cost Estimator (SRCE) Version 2.0 Effectively
Cost $550
Presented by: Jeff Parshley, P.G., C.P.G., C.E.M. Corporate Consultant, SRK Consulting (U.S.), Inc., Reno, NV
The Standardized Reclamation Cost Estimator (SRCE) is a public domain Microsoft Excel-based tool that can be used to calculate mine closure costs. The SRCE uses straightforward user input to create a first-principles estimate of closure costs. A state-specific version is currently used in Nevada by most of the mines and another version is available for use in other states and internationally.
This two-day short course is designed to introduce the SRCE and provide hands-on training to persons interested in using the tool. Instructors will use a combination of teaching tools including, hands-on examples, to familiarize attendees with the components of the model, and provide short-cuts and tips to help them make effective use of the tool. Advanced topics will include how to create custom calculations within the SRCE and integrate the results from other closure cost estimating tools into the SRCE to create an all-inclusive closure cost estimate.
This year we will be using a beta version of the new SRCE 2.0 for the short course. This version has a number of new features including the ability to perform detailed scheduling of costs, filtering by location, area and project phase.
Attendees will need to bring a laptop computer and engineering scale for the hands-on exercises.


Mine Waste Management, Tailings and Waste Rock – Technologies and Techniques
Cost $550
Course Organizer: Isaac Ahmed, BA.Sc, MA.Sc, P.Eng, Associate, Senior Project Engineer, Golder Associates Ltd., Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Mine waste management is an integral part of mining operations. Different strategies for the management of tailings and waste rock are being developed to mitigate environmental impacts, decrease costs and help reach the mining company’s sustainability goals. The intent of this workshop is to provide the audience with the latest technologies and techniques in mine waste management.
The workshop will first present the current concepts employed in today’s modern mines to manage tailings; process tailings to different dewatered states, to a thickened non-segregating, paste or filter cake consistency. The workshop will then show how these processed tailings can be deposited in pit or combined with waste rock in some cases in co-disposal, co-mingling and paste rock applications. Strategic planning for closure and dam stability will form a part of these discussions. The advantages and disadvantages of these mine waste disposal techniques will be discussed along with the technologies required to process the tailings and waste rock. Current trends in backfilling will also be a topic within this workshop. Case studies will be used to demonstrate the advantages of these techniques. Emphasis will be on the practical aspects of the mine waste facility and tailings processing plant operations, systems and procedures, based on our experience in design, construction, commissioning and operation of such systems.
The design of mine waste management systems involves a multi-disciplinary team. On the deposition side, on site selection, dam design and water management, expertise in the areas of geochemistry, hydrology, water resources, hydrogeology and geotechnical engineering are required, with careful consideration on the environmental and social aspects of the mine waste facility. On the tailings processing side with transporting and dewatering tailings, a diverse team of engineers, fully conversant in process, mechanical, pipeline, electrical, instrumentation and structural engineering is required. In all cases, a thorough understanding of the tailings and waste rock properties is essential to the successful, holistic implementation of the mine waste solution.

Cost: $275
Instructor: Thom Seal, PH.D.,P.E., Q.P., Mining – Metallurgical – Mineral Process Engineer, Director of the Institute of Mineral Resource Studies
Barrick Gold of North America Professor, Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering, University of Nevada, Reno

The technology of heap leaching gold and silver ores originated at the University of Nevada, Reno and the US Bureau of Mines on the campus. The class will cover the history of the evolution of this technology to today’s heap leach operations which represented about 10% of the gold production in 2004. Gold and silver heap leaching in Nevada is big with man made mountains that provide the economics for the large open pit mines to be profitable from material that was previously waste rock.
Presentations in the class will be made by leaders in the field led by Dr. Thom Seal, PE, a UNR professor and inventor and developer of the Hydro-JexTM 3-D heap leaching technology, who will address the history and theory of heap leaching. Dr. Carl Nesbitt, Principal Metallurgist for Welsh Hagen of Reno will add his expertise on the hydrometallurgy occurring in the heap leaching process. Dr. Seal will inform the class participants on the proper sampling of material for heap leach testing, while elaborating on agglomeration, column leaching and metallurgical lab tests. A representative from Knight Piesold will lay the foundation for the construction of heap leach pads by a presentation on the Geotechnical Aspects of Heap Leaching. Heap Leach operations and optimization will be presented by Dr. Seal. A representative from UNR will present basic economic data on the heap leach technology. Dr. Seal will conclude the class on the subject of closure and reclamation of heap leach pads.
Preliminary presentations include:

  • History and Theory of Heap Leaching, Dr. Thom Seal
  • Hydrometallurgy in Heap Leaching, Dr. Carl Nesbitt
  • Geotechnical Aspects of Heap Leaching, Dr. Thom Seal
  • Ore Sampling and Agglomeration, Dr. Thom Seal
  • Heap Leach Operation and Optimization, Dr. Thom Seal
  • Heap Leach Capital and Operational Costs, UNR
  • Rinsing, Closure and Reclamation, Dr. Thom Seal


Cost: $255
Instructors: LINDA BLOOM, M.SC., P.GEO, President & CEO, Analytical Solutions Ltd., Toronto, ON, CANADA and Elizabeth Zbinden, PhD, Independent (Consulting) Geologist & Geochemist, Reno, NV
The Art of Fire Assay: Risk assessment of fire assay techniques to design better assay quality control programs.
Assay Quality Control Programs: A discussion of regulatory requiremenets, “industry standards”, and the effective use of QC.
Is it a QC Failure? Now What? Defining the correct control limits and deciding on corrective action can be time consuming. Learn how to stream line decision making and improve confidence in the assays.
Precision and Uncertainty: Error in geochemical data and assays does not undermine their value, but it is essential to understand the associated risk. An assessment of the various tools to assess precision with an emphasis on robust methods is provided.
Assessing Bias: We compare data sets (drill methods, check assays, historical data to name a few). The “Fallacy of Averages” will be discussed and alternative methods introduced to measure and visualize bias.

Cost: $275
Instructors: Eur-Ing Dr. Corby G. Anderson QP CENG FIMMM FICHEME, Harrison Western Professor, Kroll Institute for Extractive Metallurgy, George S. Ansell Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, Colorado School of Mines, Denver, CO and Dr. Courtney Young, QP, Department Head and Lewis S. Prater Distinguished Professor, Metallurgical & Materials Engineering, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
This short course is open to anyone wanting to learn about mineral processing and extractive metallurgy operations. It is particularly good as a refresher or introductory course. In this regard, the course begins with simple concepts such as sampling, analysis (mineralogical, chemical and size), material balances and smelter schedules. It then introduces attendees to processing methods and equipment, particularly those utilized in the mining industry (but also the recycling industry as well). Various unit operations are reviewed including comminution (crushing, grinding, screening and classification), mineral separations (flotation, magnetic, gravity and electrostatic), and metal production and purification (hydrometallurgy, pyrometallurgy and electrometallurgy) as well as environmental management (dewatering, tailings disposal, and waste treatment for water, dust and air). Flowsheets of typical operations are reviewed throughout with implications on flowsheet development.

Course Organizers: Boart Longyear, Elko, NV and AMC, Salt Lake City, UT
Cost: $200
Boart Longyear and AMC are jointly presenting a hands-on drilling short course covering the following aspects: Surface Core Drilling, Reverse Circulation Drilling, Mud properties and Solids Control (equipment will be set up in the parking lot at the Nugget). In addition to how the drills function, there will be experienced Operations personnel conducting this class which allows the attendees to get questions answered that may be beneficial to their day to day projects.
This short course is an introduction to obtaining subsurface information by drilling. All drilling methods involve tradeoffs between sample quality and cost. This course will cover the benefits and drawbacks of the various methods. Topics will include types of samples obtained, relative costs, environmental foot print, getting the most information out of the hole, and basics of drill contracts. Also, the course will provide a state of the art view of the technical side of what comprises a drilling fluid, what properties and functions are desirable and possible, limitations which may exist, and which fluid types are appropriate for drilling in different geologic conditions. The course will discuss common fluid types used in air drilling (RC and conventional), as well as coring and mud rotary applications.
The course will be immediately useful to exploration geologists, drilling contractors and other personnel responsible for the planning and management of mineral exploration drilling programs.

Cost: $15 Lunch Fee
Presented by: Tim Pruitt, EHS Manager, Boart Longyear Drilling Services, Elko, NV
MSHA Part 48 regulations require that surface mining workers complete a minimum of 8 hours of refresher training each year. This 8 Hour Surface Miner refresher class will do just that. Boart Longyear Drilling Services is offering this class at no cost to you. Prerequisite to this class is participants previously had new miner or refresher class.
Participants will receive a Certificate of Completion (MSHA 5000-23) – good for 1 year.
Class is limited to 30. Register early. If you have any questions regarding this class please contact Tim Pruitt – (775) 397-3496, or email:

Cost: $275
Tour participants will meet on Monday evening to go over Tuesday’s schedule. A meeting place and time will be sent out to each participant once it has been arranged.
The bus will depart and return to the tour bus entrance on the ground floor of the Nugget Casino Resort. Departure time yet to be determined. Weather conditions will be a determining factor.
Guide: Pat Nelson, R.E.P.A., P.A. Nelson Company – Environmental, Grass Valley, CA
Course Sponsor: Sierrans for Responsible Resource Development, Grass Valley, CA


Tour description:
In association with Teichert Materials, the Sierrans for Responsible Resource Development is offering a combined dredge and hardrock mining technology tour.
The tour will be in two parts, featuring dredge mining and reclamation activities in the Yuba Goldfields site near Marysville in the morning. After a traditional Cornish Miners’ lunch at the historic Holbrooke Hotel during which speakers will describe current mining projects, the afternoon will feature a historic hardrock mine technology tour at the North Star Mining Museum in Grass Valley.