Department of Metallurgy

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Programme: Engineering Metallurgy

The Department of Metallurgy maintains strong links with the metal industry within South Africa, providing undergraduates with exposure to a wide range of metal-related operations. The exposure equips graduates with sound knowledge of metal production, design and manufacture.


Metallurgical Engineers are skilled in the production of metals and metallic materials. They also play a vital role in assessing the suitability of metals for use in metallic goods, development of ways to process metals and convert them into useful goods.

Extraction Metallurgists specialize in the extraction of metals and minerals from run of mine ores. They control, design process improvements to optimize the recovery of metals and minerals from ore. Often these processes require further refinement to purify metals extracted.

Extraction Metallurgists are also focused on recovery efficiency and cost control. Sampling at various stages in the process is an important aspect of plant control to ensure target recoveries are achieved. Sampling analysis requires metallurgists to be familiar with chemical analysis and other sophisticated analytical techniques.

Career Opportunities

Employment opportunities that exist across a range of industry settings, within the field of metallurgy and allied industries:

Metallurgy​ ​
  • ​Chemical Engineer
  • Extractive Metallurgist / Metallurgical Engineer
  • Hydrometallurgical Engineer
  • Metallurgy / Mineral Processing Consulting
  • Metallurgy / Mineral Processing Research
  • ​​Mineral Process Engineer
  • Physical Metallurgist / Materials Engineer
  • Plant Engineer
  • Process Engineer
  • Pyrometallurgical Engineer


Head of Department: Dr Elizabeth Makhatha