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Cooperative Partnership Between Industry And Academia For Undergraduate Research Training: The North State Gold Mine Project

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

A Potpourri of Innovations in Physics

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.328.1 - 8.328.11



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Paper Authors

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G. Burbach

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3580

Cooperative Partnership Between Industry and Academia for Undergraduate Research Training: The North State Gold Mine Project1

G. Van Ness Burbach*, Caesar R. Jackson**, Guoqing Tang**, Dominic P. Clemence***, and Mark Kithcart**** *Pyramid Environmental, Inc., 700 N. Eugene St., Greensboro, NC 27401 / **Department of Physics / ***Department of Mathematics / ****Department of Mechanical and Chemical Engineering / North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, NC 27411 *


Pyramid Environmental & Engineering, P.C. entered into a research partnership with North Carolina A&T State University to develop undergraduate research programs in geophysical and environmental sciences under the University’s Talent-21 Program, funded by the NSF’s HBCU- UP. One goal of this partnership was to develop research projects for undergraduate students that would be supervised by professional scientists and engineers. In the summer of 2001 we started the first such research project: a geophysical survey of an abandoned gold mine site, the North State Gold Mine, which was beginning residential development. There was concern that voids associated with former mine workings might pose significant geotechnical, environmental, and safety hazards as the properties were developed. Under the supervision of Pyramid’s professional geophysicist, a group of three students conducted a 2-D Resistivity Survey of the property. First the students were introduced to geophysical surveying theory via a series of informal seminars/workshops. The students then collected over 900 meters of DC resistivity data along 13 profiles on the site. The students downloaded, processed, and interpreted the data. They located several potential voids in the subsurface that were later further investigated by geotechnical drilling. The students produced a joint written report on the project. They also presented a poster presentation of their work at the HBCU-UP National Research Conference in Albany, GA in February 2002. This project was a “win-win” for all involved: the industry consultant, the property owner/developer, the community, the university, and most of all, the students. We have since returned to the gold mine site to continue the research using different geophysical techniques and we look forward to more cooperative student research projects in the future.

1 This work was supported in part by the National Science Foundation under the Grant HRD-9909058.

Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright©2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Burbach, G. (2003, June), Cooperative Partnership Between Industry And Academia For Undergraduate Research Training: The North State Gold Mine Project Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--11614

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