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The 2008 SME Distinguished Member Award  

Awarded To: Patrick R. Taylor

After serving in the U.S. Army in Vietnam, Taylor received a B.S. degree in metallurgical engineering and a B.S. degree in mathematics in 1974 from the Colorado School of Mines (CSM). He received his Ph.D. degree in metallurgical engineering from CSM in 1978. In 1977, he joined the mining and metallurgical engineering faculty at the University of Idaho as an assistant professor. He became a registered professional engineer in 1981 and helped engineer a number of small-scale gold recovery operations. He became an associate professor at Idaho in 1980 and professor in 1985. He started the Taylor Metallurgical Laboratory in 1984. The company performed fire assay, flotation, gravity separation and leaching. In the early 1990s, Taylor began research in the thermal plasma processing of materials. He has developed a very significant research laboratory where various plasma torches and reactors are used to make new materials or to treat wastes. From 1995 to 2000, he was department head of the materials, metallurgical, mining and geological engineering program at the University of Idaho. Taylor was the Fred N. Peebles professor and head of materials science and engineering at the University of Tennessee from 2000 to 2002. He was successful in hiring new faculty and expanding the department’s relationship with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. In 2002, he was named the George S. Ansell Chair distinguished professor in chemical metallurgy at the CSM. This brought him full circle back to where he began his career in extractive metallurgy. Taylor has supervised research for more than 50 graduate students, published more than 120 papers and holds six patents. He has been active in SME, dating back to 1975. He has served on numerous committees and has chaired several of them. Most recently he has served as the chair of the Research Council, member of the professional registration committee, chair of the pyrometallurgy committee and member of the MPD executive committee.

About The SME Distinguished Member Award:

The Distinguished Member Award, established in 1975, is presented to a select few who have distinguished themselves by demonstrating significant and sustained contributions to the minerals industry and to SME. There must be some contributions to both the industry and SME, though significant and sustained contributions can be to either one.


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