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Curtin professor inducted into Australian Mining Hall of Fame

Media release

C285/08

28 October 2008

Curtin University of Technology Emeritus Professor John de Laeter’s seminal research into mineral exploration technology which led to improvements in mining exploration practices has been recognised with his induction into the Australian Prospectors and Miners Hall of Fame.

Professor de Laeter was honoured by the Hall of Fame Board during a gala awards dinner at the Duxton Hotel in Perth earlier this month.

Describing his induction as a surprise, Professor de Laeter said he was pleased to join such illustrious company in the Hall of Fame.

“I am very grateful to accept this induction and receive such high recognition from my colleagues in the mining industry,” Professor de Laeter said.

The Hall of Fame recognises the significant contributions made by individuals or groups of people to the mining industry and inductees are chosen by an advisory board of mining historians, researchers and experts each year.

Professor de Laeter’s induction recognises his contribution to geochronological research (the science of dating and determining the time sequence of events in the history of the earth).  His work has been undertaken at Curtin in association with the Geological Survey of Western Australia.

The research, which was conducted from 1968 to 1993, centred on developing an understanding of the geological framework of the Yilgarn and Pilbara cratons and enabled exploration for minerals to be placed on a firmer, more scientific basis.

Vice-Chancellor of Curtin, Professor Jeanette Hacket, said the honour was worthy recognition of Professor de Laeter’s contribution to science education and the development of research, particularly in relation to mineral science.

“Although he is best known for his research on geochronology, Professor de Laeter’s work on the advancement of science includes contributions to nuclear physics, atomic weights, mass spectrometry, astrophysics, education and business,” Professor Hacket said.

The timing of this award coincides with the recent publication of the thematic issue, edited by Professor de Laeter, of the Australian Journal of Earth Sciences on Australian geochronology.

Modified: 28 October 2008