Dr. Courtney Young, Ph.D., RM
Department of Metallurgical & Materials Engineering
Lewis S. Prater Distinguished Professor
Mineral Processing & Extractive Metallurgy
Montana Tech Research Thrust: Natural Resource Extraction, Waste Management
Dr. Courtney Young is a graduate of three premiere mineral/coal processing and extractive metallurgy institutions having obtained his B.S. in Mineral Processing Engineering from Montana Tech in 1984, M.S. in Mining and Minerals Engineering from Virginia Tech in 1988, and Ph.D. in Metallurgical Engineering from U of Utah in 1994. He joined the faculty at Montana Tech in 1993. His specialties in mineral processing and extractive metallurgy include mineral analysis and characterization, flotation, physical separations, leaching, cyanide, uranium, base and precious metal processing, and adsorption.
Dr. Young enjoys applying technologies to solve mining sustainability problems including waste treatment, water remediation, tailings and slags recycling, energy reduction, and flowsheet development at all academic levels. While a faculty member for nearly 25 years, he has taught numerous courses but the latest include Introduction to Mineral Processing, Hydrometallurgy and Aqueous Processing, Fire Assay, Materials Handling Design, Flotation, Processing of Energy Resources (Coal and Uranium), and Processing of Precious Metal Resources (mostly Gold). During this time, Dr. Young has also worked on numerous research projects with various funding sources, particularly mining companies and often in collaboration with the Center for Advanced Minerals & Materials Processing (CAMP) at Montana Tech.
Ph.D. University of Utah
M.S. Virginia Tech
B.S. Montana Tech
- EMET 232 Processing Fundamentals
- EMET 234 Processing Fundamentals Lab I
- EMET 380 M&ME Safety & Health
- EMET 401 Hydrometallurgy
- EMAT 471 Materials Characterization & Analysis
- EMET 494W M&ME Seminar
- EMET 504 Fire Assay
- EMET 511 Materials Handling Design
- EMET 534 Flotation
- EMET 583 Gold Processing
- EMET 594 Graduate Seminar
2001-present Tenured Professor, M&ME, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
1998-2019 Department Head, M&ME, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
1996-2001 Associate Professor, M&ME, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
1995-1996 Assistant Professor, M&ME, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
1994-present Academic Fellow, CAMP, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
1994 Research Assistant Professor and CAMP Postdoc, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
1993 Research Fellow and Postdoc, Mine Waste Technology Program (MWTP), Montana Tech, Butte, MT
Dr. Young is world renown for doing research with and for industry. His research predominantly involves mineral processing and extractive metallurgy and applying these separation technologies to critical materials, mining sustainability, recycling as well as waste treatment and minimization. Consequently, his research is broad, covering various topics: improving gold recovery, remediating cyanide, selecting and testing ores, recycling spent pot-liner, reducing energy consumption, designing flowsheets, treating acid-rock drainage, making pig-iron from slag, developing nano-particles, and doing anything involving flotation such as modeling, characterizing adsorption and other surface reactions, and analyzing new chemicals such as novel collectors for rare earth minerals and depressants for copper/moly separation.
Dr. Young's research expertise consists of Critical Minerals, Water Treatment, Flotation, Analysis/Spectroscopy, Electrochemistry, Extractive Metallurgy, Waste Minimization, Process Engineering, Remediation, Sulfate Chemistry, Mining Sustainability, and Mineral Seperations.He graduated from 3 premiere mineral and metallurgical programs in the USA. He has been at Montana Tech for over 30 years. As faculty, he has focused his research on industrial needs, including through federal grants. By engaging industry in this manner, graduate and undergraduate students do research on real-world projects, not only solving problems but also giving students inside tracks to jobs, both temporary internships and permanent placement.
Army Research Lab (with Ron White/CAMP), “Advanced Processing of REE Natural Resources,” (2015-Present).
Army Research Lab (with CAMP), “Rare Earth Processing by Flotation Using Novel Collectors and Other Reagents,” U of Alabama-Birmingham (2014).
Office of Naval Research, “REE Selective Processing by Leaching and Chelating SPCS,” (2012-2016).
- Matching Grant, “Lunar Soil Separates,” (2013).
- Travel Grant, “Lunar Soil Separates,” with Montana Space Grant Consortium at MSU-Bozeman, (2012-2013).
- Ralph Steckler/Space Grant Space Colonization Research and Technology Program, “Multiple Terrestrial Resources for Simulating Lunar Soil,” with Montana Space Grant Consortium at MSU-Bozeman, (2010).
Chevron-Phillips Chemical, “Confirmation of Orfom D8 Mechanism, Phase IV,” (2023-2024), Phases I-III, (2016-2020).
Clariant, “Characterization of Frothers,” (2020-2021).
Integrated Recycling Technologies, With A. Das As Co-PI, “PCB Recycling,” (2018-2020).
Newmont Mining Company, “Various Projects,” (2005-Present).
CAMP, “Various Projects,” (1993-Present).
- Chapter 1.1: Mineral Properties, Characterization and Processing, with A. Das, accepted, Mineral Processing and Extractive Metallurgy Handbook, SME, Littleton, CO, 2018.
- Carbothermal Reduction of Copper Smelter Slag for Recycling into Pig Iron and Glass, with P. Sarfo, G. Wyss, G. Ma and A. Das, Minerals Engineering, 107:8-19, 2017.
- Modeling and Optimization of Rare Earth Mineral Flotation Using Salicylhydroxamic Acid. R. LaDouceur and P. Amelunxen, In: XXVIII International Mineral Processing Congress, CIM, Westmount, Quebec, Canada, 2016.
- Development of a Novel Technology to Reduce Energy Consumption During Electrowinning of Copper. A. Das and F. Dakubo, In: XXVIII International Mineral Processing Congress, CIM, Westmount, Quebec, Canada, 2016.
- Xanthate Chemisorption at Copper and Chalcopyrite Surfaces, J.L. Bowden, J of SAIMM, 116:503-8, 2016.
- Utility of Mass-Balanced EH-pH Diagrams II Applications of Gibbs Rule, R.N. Gow and H. Huang, Miner. Metall. Process, 33(3):107-115, 2016.
- Spectroelectrochemistry of Enargite III: Reactivity in Alkaline Sulfide Solutions, R.N. Gow, H. Huang and G. Hope, Miner. Metall. Process, 32(1):14-21, 2015.
2019, 2009, 2003, 1998 Faculty Achievement Award
2016 Lifetime Researcher Award
2009 Undergraduate Research Appreciation Award
Society of Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
2024-2026 Board of Directors (just elected)
2023 Annual Meeting MPD Top 5 Presentation
2022 Registered Member (RM)
2021 Henry Krumb Lecturer
2020 Antoine M. Gaudin Award
2017 Distinguished Member/Fellow
2009, 2015 President’s Citation
1999-present American Exploration and Mining Association (AEMA)
1998-present Montana Mining Association (MMA)
Honorary Lifetime Member since 2007
1982-present Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration (SME)
Distinguished Member/Fellow since 2017