Introducing SCI Ambassador, Paulina Quintanilla

SCI Ambassador - image of Paulina Quintanilla“I encourage my peers to join because SCI provides numerous possibilities to grow as a scientist in a broad-spectrum of topics.”

What are your research interests? 
My research field is the control and optimisation in the mineral processing area. Particularly focused on froth flotation, which is the largest tonnage separation process in this field.

How did you first get involved with SCI?
I first heard about SCI from my PhD supervisor, who encouraged me to join and be involved in the Society. I did not doubt joining as SCI offers several opportunities for early-career scientists like me – such as scholarships and funding opportunities, as well as a wide range of scientific events.

I was honoured to receive one of the three SCI Scholarships 2020-2022. This unique opportunity has allowed me to enhance my academic profile, expand my networking, and learn about other research areas. I encourage my peers to join because SCI provides numerous possibilities to grow as a scientist in a broad-spectrum of topics.

SCI aims to be 'where science meets business'. What is the potential commercial application of your research?
My research area has a potential industrial application since it focuses on the control and optimisation of the largest tonnage separation process: froth flotation. This optimisation implies that valuable metals can be efficiently recovered, resulting in positive impacts on the economic, environmental and production aspects. For example, in 2020, the British Government has set the next steps towards a green industrial revolution. This transition to 100% green energy also implies an increased demand for valuable metals required to manufacture solar panels, wind turbines, batteries, electric vehicles, and other technologies. Mining is vital for extracting these valuable metals, implying that there is an urgent need to optimise current production processes to meet the required demand.

What do you hope to gain from your involvement with SCI?
I hope to keep up to date with the scientific events, funding opportunities and scholarships offered by the SCI to disseminate this information to my peers. I would like to gain more experience in working and communicating with other academic researchers and people from the industry sector, looking for an opportunity to collaborate.

Paulina Quintanilla
Imperial College London – Department of Earth Science and Engineering

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