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Judging of Australia Prize begins



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J). AUSTRALIA^L1-

HON. ROSS FREE, MP MINISTER FOR

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 31 OCTOBER 1991 155/91

JUDGING OF AUSTRALIA PRIZE BEGINS

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Exploration geology, economic geology, mine engineering and improved refining and ore processing techniques are among the fields covered in norminations for the 1992 Australia Prize.

The 1992 prize is for work in physical sciences related to mining or mineral processing. The winner or winners are expected to be announced in January 1992.

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The Australia Prize is an international award of $250,000 established by the Commonwealth Government for an outstanding achievement in a selected area of science and technology promoting human welfare. It was first awarded in 1990.

The Minister for Science and Technology, Ross Free, said today that there had been a high level of interest from the science and technology communities, both in Australia and overseas.

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"Australians have been well represented in the field of nominations," Mr Free said.

"Overseas nominations have come both from countries with whom we have long-standing ties, such as the UK and the USA, as well as those with whom new relationships are being formed, such as China and Czechoslovakia."

"Mining and mineral processing are good examples of the vital role played by science and technology in our economic and social development. The Australia Prize highlights the national benefits of applying the results of science and technology."

"The level of Australian nominations reflects the standing of Australian scientists and technologists in the forefront of the international scientific and technological effort.

"Their contributions greatly improve our understanding of mining and minerals processing and add value to our mining production."

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"Mining and minerals processing remain an important sector of our economy and an integral part of our society. Australian scientists, miners, engineers, industrialists, financiers and many others have

combined their intellectual and practical capabilities with our wealth of natural resources to create the economic base on which our present and future prosperity rest."

Mr Free also announced that Professor Paul Davies of Adelaide and Professor Howard Womer of Wollongong had accepted membership of the Australia Prize Committee, which is assessing nominations and will recommend the w inner/s.

The inaugural Australia Prize was awarded jointly to Professor Allen Kerr (Australia), Professor Eugene Nester (USA) and Professor Jeff Schell (Germany) for their work in the genetic engineering of plants and microbes.

CANBERRA Contact: (NR276) Carmel Statham Phil Tardif DITAC Minister's Office

(06) 276 1780 (06) 277 7280