In this virtual meeting, carried out by means of ZOOM platform, two main topics were discussed.

First of all, we focused on voting the new Council proposal. The proposal obtained 14 votes in favor, meaning that it was accepted.

Afterwards, Jordi Llopis and Malena Cazorla, members in charge of the II Debate on Mining of the Future: Asteroid and Planetary Mining, introduced the topic by showing us the presentation they have been preparing over the course of the last few weeks. The presentation was done using the platform ISEAZY.


Lastly, the president of the Student Chapter Malena Cazorla explained and clarified the current state of the schedule of future activities to the rest of us.

From the BCN SC Council, we want to thank all the members that assisted the meeting for taking part in the election.



On May 25th, we had the chance to participate in the 1st Iberoamerican Virtual Meeting of SEG Student Chapters, organized by the UNLP SEG Student Chapter, from Argentina. In the meeting, a lot of Chapters from South America and Spain were invited. Each of them had a few minutes to present their activities and to expose the different initatives that they were carrying out during this CoVid-19 pandemic and how they were facing it.

It was a very nice opportunity for all of us to get to know each other and to get to know the members of the different Councils. Additionally, we got to know the activities organized from each Chapter and several ideas about collaboration between Chapters were discussed.

We want to thank UNLP Student Chapter for organizing the activity. We hope that another meeting is organized soon and that we can collaborate as much as possible.



On last 21st May the members of the BCN SGA-SEG Student Chapter had the opportunity to listen to Dr. Francisco Javier González in the second part of our first session of Debates on Mining of the Future: Seabed Mining.

Dr. González is an active researcher at the Marine Geology Division of the Spanish Geological Survey (IGME), where he focuses on the study of petrology, mineralogy, geochemistry and metallogenesis of deep sea environments (Fe-Mn nodules and crusts and polymetallic sulfides). Dr. González is also the coordinator of MINDeSEA, the flagship project of GeoERA on seabed mineral deposits in the European Seas, and a collaborator at the Department of Crystallography and Mineralogy of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM).

In the presentation Dr. Gonzalez talked us through the current state of exploration of seabed resources and projects that focus on this field in Spain, Europe and worldwide. He also commented on the geopolitical aspect of the matter and explained the work of international organizations like the ISA in regulating exploration (and foreseeable future exploitation) of the ocean floor.

After this first introduction, we learned about the different types of ore deposits that form deep underwater in the Earth’s oceans, as well as the chances and challenges that their sustainable exploitation will present. Dr. González says that such resources may hold the key to future supply of critical raw materials, but that caution must be taken in regard to the fragile environments where they are found and possible impacts on marine life or climate change. Hence that much more research is needed before we are able to start using them, should it be necessary.


Finally and to the interest of all us our guest discussed recent discoveries of IGME in the canarian coasts and described how it is like to live and work for months in a ship during oceanographic campaigns.

From the BCN SGA-SEG Student Chapter we would like to thank Dr. González for his brilliant presentation and wish him the best.



New initiative by Peru SGA Student Chapter: PDYM - Digital Platform of Mineral Deposits (Plataforma Digital de los Yacimientos Minerales)

Lately, during these tough times, some new digital platforms have been created in order to fill the void left by cancelled events and conferences due to CoVid-19.

In this post we want to talk you about one of these platforms, the PDYM (Digital Platform of Mineral Deposits, by its Spanish acronym), which is an initiative of the Peru SGA Student Chapter, which aims to promote dissemination and debate on mining deposits through virtual talks in Spanish. These talks are open to the entire Spanish-speaking community that belongs to the SGA.

Those interested in attending the virtual talks can find them on the following link: Plataforma Digital de los Yacimientos Minerales, in which they publish the dates and schedule of the next conferences. Be sure to register for the next talk up to 24h before the start.

Logo of the Digital Platform of Mineral Depósits - SGA Perú Student Chapter


Last April 21st, some of our members had the chance to attend the Webinar “How Leapfrog Geo, Edge and Central can optimize short-term work plan?”imparted by Mariana Ordoñez and organized by Seequent. As academic users Leapfrog-Geo software, we want to thank them for giving us the opportunity to participate in this Webinar. During the talk, Mariana briefly explained the main functions of the software.

These are the opinions of our Student Chapter participants:

Leapfrog-Geo is one of the main software used in the mining industry, as it is a powerful tool to create 3D geologic models (such as basins, mineral deposits, complex geological structures, etc.). You can see more examples here: Academic - Hub

Leapfrog-Edge is used to carry out multiple types of calculations, such as ore volume of specific rock type,  calculating the stripping ratio, among other mineral estimations that are very useful for mining companies, in a very visual and intuitive environment.

Mariana did an introduction to the workflow that should be followed when using this software in both short-term and long-term mining engineering work plans and also did a demonstration with a model of a mineral deposit in which she is working on at the moment. 

The participant members want to remark that, although some concepts were a little bit advanced and specific of the mining industry professionals for our level of knowledge, the Webinar has given them a new perspective about geological modeling. To conclude, one of the functions that our members found most interesting about the software modules is the ability to combine display 3D options and complex calculations.

We hope to be able soon to include these tools within our Student Chapter when we investigate a deposit (e.g., for our final degree thesis, master’s thesis or Ph.D. thesis) to give more value to mineral resources, even at an early stage of our university studies.

We hope to be able soon to include these tools within our Student Chapter when we investigate a deposit (e.g., for our final degree thesis, master’s thesis or Ph.D. thesis) to give more value to mineral resources, even at an early stage of our university studies.

Additionally, if you want to have a first contact with the software and see an example of what you can do with it, in the following figures you can see and play with a 3D-Model developed by some members of the BCN Student Chapter during the Leapfrog course that took place in 2017:



Since November 2019, we have been involved in activities to expand our knowledge about "rare elements" in the periodic table. Some of these activities were focused on preparing conferences with experts and, additionally, we had the chance to participate in the writing and preparation of an article related to these rare elements. This activity would improve our members writing skills and they would also get to know a little bit more about rare elements and their distribution (small- and large-scale).

Title and authors of the article.


This paper was directed by Dr. Joan Carles Melgarejo, who gave us the appropriate tools to start writing the draft. Finally, and with the review and contribution of numerous professors and researchers, the paper has been published in "L'Atzavara" journal. In this paper, we discuss some aspects such as: 

- What do we mean when we speak of "rare elements"?

- How are the elements distributed in the mineral's structure?

- Distribution and concentration of elements on Earth (relative abundance)

- Concentration mechanisms.

Additionally, we expose examples of deposits in Catalonia that contain one or more of these "rare elements" and, finally, we discuss their potential and the distribution of these elements in this area.

We want to thank Dr. Joan Carles Melgarejo and colleagues for giving our Chapter the chance to participate in such an amazing activity.

If you are interested in reading the full article, you can download it from this link:


Last March 11th, we had the pleasure to receive Diego Domínguez Carretero to our 11th Informative Talk. He is a former student of University of Barcelona, as well as, an ex-member of the SGA-SEG Barcelona Student Chapter. He gave us a speech about his master thesis and the experience of his master’s degree in Geneva, Switzerland.

Diego explained to us he became interested in economic geology because of the present and eminently greater need of society for critical metals, key to the development of science and new technologies. It is a field in which he encourages undergraduates to explore not only on the grounds of its potential but also because it can lead to varied and interesting careers. He points out that another of its greatest attractives is that it integrates areas as diverse as petrology, mineralogy, geochemistry, structural geology, geodynamics or even stratigraphy and hydrogeology.

After graduating, Diego moved to Switzerland to study his MSc, where he received an Excellence Scholarship. He says that the the overall experience was extremely beneficial because it granted him the opportunity to live abroad on his own and learn about new perspectives and ways to approach geology.

His Master thesis focused on the formation and architecture of a distal skarn system located in Elba Island, Italy. He explained that the genesis of the Miocene iron deposit, hosted by Palaeozoic marble and schist remained unknown until now. After a brief description of the local geology, he explained that the genesis of the ore deposit consisted in three principal stages.

First of all, the formation of silicate skarns took place, with the main mineral association being garnet, pyroxene, ilvaite and epidote. Secondly, iron oxides with hematite and magnetite were formed, followed by a third stage of sulphides - mainly pyrite, but also chalcopyrite, sphalerite and galena among others.

According to his study,  the genesis of this deposit could be linked to the hydrothermal magmatic fluids from Miocene felsic and peralkaline magmas of Elba and the Tyrrhenian sea, although he pointed out it is difficult to know yet to what particular magmatic body it is linked. Additionally, he stated that there is the possibility of it being linked to a magmatic body that does not outcrop the surface nowadays - an unknown body.

Finally, he explained it has been the first time that a formation of a distal skarn on Elba has been dated using geochronology of U/Pb in garnet.

We would like to express our most sincere thanks and appreciation to Diego for sharing with us his work and personal experience.


Last February 27th we had the chance to do the first session of a new series of activities organized by us: Debates about the Mining of the Future. The main objective of these sessions is to gain knowledge about non-conventional mining, such as seabed mining, mining in the Space (asteroids, planets, etc.) and biomining. A feature that we want to remark about these sessions is that it is a big opportunity for our members to get to improve their management, oral and organizational skills, since they are ones that, in groups of two to three people and voluntarily, organize the presentation of the topic and decide the format of the session. They can choose to do an oral presentation, to show a documentary about the topic, to do an interactive game with the participants in the activity, etc.

This first session was organized by Carlos Ramírez (MSc in Mineral Resources - Universitat de Barcelona) and Àlex García (BSc in Geology - Universitat de Barcelona). They divided the session in two different parts. The first part consisted of an oral presentation, where they got to explain general facts about seabed mining.

They described the main seabed deposits that have been studied (to this day) in order to carry out mining projects on them, such as Seafloor Massive Sulfides, Manganese Nodules and Cobaltiferous-Ferromanganese Crusts. They also explained some disadvantages that Mining Companies must deal with when deciding to mine these types of deposits and shared with us some curiosities about seabed mining.

At the end of their talk, we debated about some interesting topics that the participants were interested in, like the legal problems Mining Companies must deal with, consequences and profitability of mining these deposits, among other things.

We want to thank and congratulate Àlex and Carlos for their participation and their commitment to carry out this activity. Further sessions related with this series of activities will take place in the following months (via online), in which we will get to discuss and debate more about seabed mining, with the participation of specialists, and we will introduce the second main topic of Debates about the Mining of the Future: mining in the space.


Two members of our Chapter (David Ruiz and Ernest Onetti) were invited to attend a one-day course given by Dr. Joan Carles Melgarejo (Mineralogy Professor at the University of Barcelona) and to assist him during the course. This course was organized for a High School class from Amposta, Catalonia, Spain. It consisted of a theorical part (a conference given by Dr. Melgarejo) about geology and ore deposits, and a practical part, were they had the chance to do a half-a-day field trip to the Museum of the Mines of Bellmunt del Priorat (Pb Mines) and to visit other small-scale deposits in the area, such as the Eugènia and Règia mine. The aim of this course was to teach geological concepts to High School students through a divulgative way. 

The main functions of the members from the BCN Student Chapter were to help Dr. Melgarejo, such as in the picking of samples of altered galena, non-altered galena, dolomite, ankerite, siderite, sphalerite, pyrite and marcassite. The samples they picked up are going to be used to complete the collections from the Clonations Pilot Project, a project directed by Dr. Joan Carles Melgarejo. Additionally, they had the opportunity to attend the whole course and get to know better the Geology from Bellmunt del Priorat and get to know how to easily recognize the different minerals observed during the field trip.

Example of the samples picked during the field trip. Left: Altered galena. Right: Dolomite-galena vein from the Bellmunt Pb Mines.

Finally, the Chapter members that attended the course, and the BCN Student Chapter, want to thank Dr. Joan Carles Melgarejo for giving them the opportunity to attend this activity. 


On February 11th took place the 10th Informative Talk given by Marco Rodríguez and organized by our Chapter. Marco Rodríguez is studying the second year of the Master's degree, specialization on Mineralogy and Geochemistry, at the University of Freiburg, Germany. 

During the talk, he explained that he had the opportunity to start collaborating in this project when he was working in the Johannes Gutenberg-Universität, in Mainz, Germany. To introduce his project, he first showed us the geological and geographical context of the Caribbean. Later on, he started explaining the main objectives of the project and the study he and his colleagues had to carry out to achieve all the objectives.

Regarding to the project, he explained that it all started when they found zircons from the Caribbean in the Galápagos Island, so the main question of the project was: "How did some zircons from the Caribbean end up in the Galapagos island?". He exposed the several hypothesis he and his team discussed.

He showed us the different softwares used to achieve the objectives they had, such as GPlates and MatLab. Additionally, we got to see the geodynamic evolution of Central America, the evolution of the plates conforming the area and how the limits between the plates have changed during the last 200 My, thanks to the GPlates software.

Finally, he explained that once all the data was processed by the different softwares and interpreted by him and his colleagues, the hypothesis that fit better their ideas and conclusions was that these zircons were transported by convection movements in the mantle that followed toroidal flows.

We want to express our admiration towards him, for being involved in this project of major difficulty, and, also, we want to thank him for sharing with us his his project and for giving a talk.

Marco Rodríguez, Undergraduate and Master Chapter members that attended the Informative Talk and Joaquin Proenza, our academic advisor.


On November 15th we received the visit of Dmitriy Tonkacheev that currently is working at the Institute of Geology of Ore Deposits, Petrography, Mineralogy, and Geochemistry (IGEM RAS), in the Russian Academy of Sciences, in the framework of the Cloning project for teaching mineralogy, petrology and mineral deposits that we have been promoting since 2018.

Dmitry added to the collection samples that correspond to minerals such as diopside with calcite, phlogopite, magnetite, and hastingsite from Kovdor and some samples from Tolbachik volcano on the Kamchatka peninsula.

During his visit to the University of Barcelona, he met with our advisor and the vice president of the Student Chapter to evaluate possible ways of collaboration with the IGEM RAS Student Chapter (mineral exchange, possible trips to the Kola Peninsula and The Urals mountains, among others).

On November 16th, a visit to the mining area of ​​Molar-Bellmunt was organized to show Dmitry the region of El Priorat, which was one of the most important mining centers in Catalonia and the first extraction for lead in Galena. Some master and degree students of our faculty joined the activity.

The field trip started in The Molar Mines where oxides and silicates of manganese, copper ores (malachite, tennantite, chalcopyrite) calcite, siderite, ankerite, dolomite, barite, and galena were recognized. A guided tour in the Bellmunt Mines Museum was also carried out, which included a tour inside the Eugenia mine to observe Galena's veins and the nickeliferous veins with minerals such as Millerite.

We thank Dmitry for his visit and his interest in getting involved in this project that we consider very important for collaborative learning. We are looking forward to welcome him again.