MRL in the News!
Listen to the BBC Radio Program "Chips With Everything," about the importance of high-purity North Carolina quartz to the semiconductor industry. The program focuses on Mitchell and Avery counties, which supply over 90% of the world's high-purity quartz, and features expert commentary from Minerals Research Laboratory director Robert Carland.
NCSU Minerals Research Laboratory
The Minerals Research Laboratory is a world leader in research, development, and implementation of mineral processing techniques. The MRL is part of the North Carolina State University College of Engineering, under the management of the NCSU Industrial Extension Service.
IES is the outreach function of North Carolina State University's College of Engineering. We help new businesses grow and good businesses get better. We work with industries from the coast to the mountains, from 1,000 feet underground to 30,000 feet up, and we deliver results in quality, productivity, safety, environmental protection, energy management, and top-line growth. IES ... We Solve Problems.
MRL is the "thousand feet underground" portion of IES. We're not located a thousand feet underground -- we're right on Coxe Avenue in Asheville -- but we routinely visit clients' surface and underground mines and frequently perform assays of samples brought up from under the surface. We serve clients across the state of North Carolina and in many different regions of the U.S., and we work with many international clients as well.
The main focus of MRL's research is the beneficiation of industrial minerals -- that is, deriving and exploiting minerals for the benefit of commerce and industry. MRL's experience in industrial minerals is unmatched by any university laboratory in the United States.
The lab conducts effective research through a unique partnership between industry, government and academia. Most of MRL's research efforts are conducted for corporate sponsors. MRL research may be conducted on-site at client facilities or in our own facility, on our mineral processing equipment.
As part of a Land Grant Institution, technical assistance and service to the public is also part of the MRL mission; as a result, the lab often undertakes public service projects. One of our most popular efforts to relate our purpose and activities to the general public is our educational outreach program. MRL also teaches a college-level course on mineral separation technology in conjunction with UNC-Asheville.
Mission, Vision, & Values
The MRL's mission is the same as the Industrial Extension Service: to be a statewide, university-affiliated organization partnering with North Carolina industry as a catalyst for the transfer of knowledge and technology in support of economic development. The laboratory performs applied research that enables companies and communities to exploit the mineral resources in their areas. The MRL serves North Carolina mining and mineral-reliant industries, but also serves clients across the United States and around the world.
The IES Vision is to be the recognized leader and change agent for sustaining and advancing North Carolina's industries. The MRL is recognized as a center of expertise in the specific field of mineral characterization, analysis, and economic utilization.
The MRL values mirror the IES values: Integrity; Commitment to Excellence; Strong Customer Focus; and Dedication to Providing Value to our clients.