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Student with AMTC scolarship becomes first PhD in Mine Engineering of Chile

Dr. Nasser Madani Esfahani

On Monday April 4th Iranian Nasser Madani Esfahani became University of Chile’s first PhD. in Mine Engineering, after defending his doctoral thesis before a board of specialist professors. Nasser, 32, is in Chile since 2012 and made his doctorate studies with a scholarship granted by the AMTC, where he joined the research group on exploration and ore deposits modeling. Previously he studied Mine Engineering majoring in exploration at the Azad Islamic University, in Teheran, where he also obtained his Master Degree in the same discipline.

nasser-madani-3The examining commission was chaired by Dr. Brian Townley, academic associate researcher for the AMTC, and formed by Dr. Xavier Emery, director of the Mine Engineering Department of the FCFM and main researcher for the AMTC, Dr. Margaret Armstrong, from MINES Paris Tech, and Dr. Gregoire Mariethoz, from the University of Lausanne (the latter two, present via Skype).

What were the reasons that made Nasser come to Chile to obtain his PhD? “When I was doing my MD, I was working in my memory, and I had to read a lot of articles about my thesis. And I found that professor Emery had many articles published in many journals. And I found out he is the number one in the world in his area. Then I wrote him an e-mail, and later I was accepted here to do my PhD studies. But the main reason, the most important one, and now we can talk about it, is my teacher, because he is the world’s best in my career”, he explains.

It was professor Emery himself who became the guiding teacher of Nasser’s doctoral thesis, titled “Plurigaussian simulation of categorical variables on the non-stationy domains and its application to ore body modeling”. “It’s about geostatistic simulations of geological models, useful in cases in which rock dominions have zonification and are not homogeneous in the domains. It’s a method of stochastic simulation and it works for mine planning, oil, evaluation of ore deposits and economic assessment in mining”, Nasser details. Professor Emery adds: “The AMTC’s researchers attraction program that started in 2012 was the opportunity Nasser took to fund his PhD in Mine Engineering. In 2013 Nasser was the first student who approved the qualification exam and now he has become the program’s first graduate and also the first PhD in Mine Engineering of Chile. This achievement makes not only our department proud, but also our university”.


Dr. Brian Townley, Dr. Nasser Madani Esfahani and Dr. Xavier Emery.

Nasser will soon travel to Iran to visit his family, and later he will evaluate future work options that could develop in his country or even in Chile.

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