University-industry research partnerships

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Lakehead University | Mining

Key facilities

Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Mining and Exploration (CESME) supports research, education and outreach activities around the impacts of mineral resource exploration and extraction in Northern Ontario.

Lakehead University Environmental Laboratory conducts chemical analysis of soils, foliage, water and wastewaters. Provides laboratory and field services.

Lakehead University Mineralogical and Experimental Laboratory provides advanced mineralogical and geochemical services, including fluid inclusion analysis, mineral separations, and mineralogical assessment of geological samples.

Aquatic Toxicology Research Centre specializes in regulatory testing-monitoring the effect of effluents on aquatic organisms from pulp and paper mills, mines and related industrial discharges in Northwestern Ontario.

Major collaborations

Mineral chemistry as a vector to orogenic gold mineralisation

Led by Dr. Peter Hollings (Geology), in collaboration with Gold Corp. and the University of Tasmania, this study aims to develop new techniques for deposit exploration. Co-funded by AMIRA ($104,916) and an NSERC CRD grant ($178,350).

Petrogenesis of magmatic-hydrothermal graphite deposits: A case study of the Albany graphite deposit, northwestern Ontario

Led by Dr. Andrew Conly (Geology), in collaboration with Zenyatta Ventures Ltd., this study aims to establish the origin of the Albany igneous-hosted vein graphite deposit in order to more broadly understand how these types of deposits form. Co-funded by an NSERC CRD grant ($76,750) and Zenyatta Ventures Ltd ($91,900).


  • Dr. Peter Hollings, Director of CESME, Research Chair – Dept. of Geology. Dr. Hollings’ research focuses on the application of whole rock geochemistry and petrology to the exploration for ore deposits.
  • Dr. Andrew Conly, Dept. of Geology, CESME. Dr. Conly’s research aims to understand the origin(s) of metals and fluids responsible for the formation of magmatic-hydrothermal metal deposits.
  • Dr. Shannon Zurevinski, Dept. of Geology, CESME. Dr. Zurevinski is an expert in the field of petrology of mantle-derived rocks, and experimental mineralogy. She works to characterise rare earth metals, and studies the origins of continental alkaline magmas.
  • Dr. Pedram Fatehi, Canada Research Chair in Green Chemicals and Processes, Dept. of Chemical Engineering, CESME. Dr. Fatehi studies lignin modification and the production of value-added products from modified lignin. This has applications in wastewater treatment in the mining industry.
  • Dr. Roger Mitchell, Dept. Of Geology. Dr. Mitchell is an expert in the field of economic mineralogy and petrology. He studies the characteristics and origins of kimberlites, carbonatites and alkaline rocks which are hosts to critical mineral deposits.

Special programs and work integrated learning initiatives

  • Pan-Northern Mining Research Alliance – An alliance of 21 Northern Ontario leaders from academic institutions, funding agencies, and Northern government agencies. Their goal is to support the Government of Canada’s priorities for a clean growth economy, using their collective research strengths in the area of mining.
  • Ingenuity – Designated space for the promotion of student innovation and entrepreneurial skills in the new Centre for Advanced Studies in Engineering and Sciences (CASES) building on the Thunder Bay campus.


  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • First Quantum Minerals Ltd
  • Bounty Gold Corp.
  • Teck Resources Ltd
  • Roca Mines Inc.
  • Zenyatta Ventures Ltd
  • NewGold
  • Goldcorp Inc.
  • North American Paladium

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