A pioneering new £4 million project to “unlock the underground environment” has been launched in Cornwall.
Deep Digital Cornwall is being led the Camborne School of Mines with the Institute for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence at the University of Exeter, with the aim of creating a world-leading cluster of research-intensive digital businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
With grant funding from the European Regional Development Fund, the project will benefit from three delivery partners – Cornish Lithium, Cornwall Resources Limited (CRL) and the South West Centre of Excellence in Satellite Applications.
A new physical research hub will be created on the University of Exeter’s Penryn Campus, offering a state-of-the-art 3D modelling and visualisation suite with dedicated researchers, innovators and business development specialists.
The underground is a much neglected but essential environment. It is the source of all of our metals and minerals, shapes our landscapes, provides water, heat and cooling, and controls the composition of soils.
Deep Digital Cornwall will carry out research into digital technologies and, in partnership with regional SMEs, develop new digital products, processes and services to enhance SME offerings to sectors including mining, geothermal, civil engineering, surveying and water resources, heritage, planning and more.
Dr Matt Eyre, senior lecturer in mining engineering/intelligent mining at Camborne School of Mines, said: “The management of mineral resources is essential to ensure sustainable growth, with resource efficiency at its heart. The DDC project is an exciting development to push the boundaries of digital data capture and interpretation to optimise assets.
“The outputs of the project can have wide reaching effects in an ever more technologically focused digital world.”
Brett Grist, exploration manager at CRL, added: “The CRL team are proud and excited to play a significant role as a delivery partner generating new data for the project, which we believe will contribute significantly to a resurgence of Cornish mining. Success in winning this grant funding builds on our ongoing collaboration with Camborne School of Mines and will ensure that Cornwall and its rich mineral potential are positioned at the cutting edge of developments in digital data capture, management and interpretation.”