Geology & Sustainable Mining (GSM)
In close collaboration with OCP Group (Industrial Development / Geology and Mining, Innovation Situation, Mining operations, ...) and the Benguerir Experimental Mine, UM6P’s Geology & Sustainable Mining Department (GSM), develops R&D activities in three main areas:
- Installation and development of OCP-UM6P laboratories for the analysis and micro-analysis of geological samples, geotechnical characterization, remote sensing for geological exploration and hydro-geophysical imaging ("Geo- Analytical Lab" and "Geophysical Lab").
- Development of geophysical imaging for phosphate deposits exploration; hydro- geophysical and hydro-geochemical characterization of associated aquifers; applications in key sectors of the Moroccan phosphate deposits.
- Multi-scale characterization of minor and trace elements in Moroccan phosphate basins; 3D geochemical modelling and study of the speciation of penalizing and valorizing elements; monitoring of these elements along the value chain, in ore and waste materials.
- Development of an integrated model of "Mine of the future" for the exploitation of Moroccan phosphates, integrating the new geological constraints (deepening and water saturation of deposits), the environmental need to preserve the agricultural soils and to rehabilitate the sites, but also innovations resulting from automation and digitization.
- Blasting optimization taking the geotechnical characteristics and integrating numerical modeling, with the aim of reducing nuisances and improving the overall performance of the drilling-blasting-stripping set of operations.
- Development of a mining reconciliation model integrating extraction and beneficiation operations of Moroccan phosphates.
- Valorization of waste generated by the extraction and beneficiation of phosphates: development of a direct flotation method adapted to low-grade phosphates, use of sterile cover and interbedded layers as by-products, valorization of waste dumps from rock removal, sieving stations, and washing plants, as well as washings sludges, via the recovery of the phosphate fraction and / or valuable products.
- Exploration of new resources in Morocco for the fertilizers and phosphates industries (potash, sulfur, igneous phosphates ...) and evaluation in Morocco and Sub-Saharan Africa of potential resources for new generations of environmentally friendly fertilizers, adapted to tropical soils.
- Development of new indirect methods of characterization of agricultural soils, combining remote sensing and sub-surface geophysics (transversal project with the AgBS department).
- Coordination of an international and multidisciplinary research project on phosphatogenesis of phosphate deposits.
- Valorization of the paleontological patrimony of Moroccan phosphates.