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Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining

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Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining

Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining
Abbreviation IOM3
Motto The global network for the materials cycle
Formation 2002
Legal status Non-profit organization
Purpose See motto
  • 1 Carlton House Terrace, London, SW1Y 5DB
Region served Worldwide but predominately UK and Europe
Membership Academics and industrialists across the Materials, Minerals and Mining sectors
Chief Executive Dr Bernie Rickinson
Main organ IOM3 Council
Website IOM3

The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) is a major UK engineering institution whose activities encompass the whole materials cycle, from exploration and extraction, through characterisation, processing, forming, finishing and application, to product recycling and land reuse. It exists to promote and develop all aspects of materials science and engineering, geology, mining and associated technologies, mineral and petroleum engineering and extraction metallurgy, as a leading authority in the worldwide materials and mining community.

It is a registered charity governed by Royal Charter and in 2009-10 had a gross income of £6.4million.[1] The Institute is also a member of the UK Science Council.


Its headquarters are at knowledge transfer office in Grantham, and its finance office in Stoke on Trent.

Members of the Institute come from a variety of backgrounds, from students to company chief executives. Members qualify for different grades of membership, ranging from Affiliate to Fellow (FIMMM), depending on academic qualifications and professional experience. IOM3 has an individual membership of over 18,000, and represents a combination of scientific, technical and human resources which links industry, government, research and the academic world.

Almost 60 UK 'local societies' are affiliated with the Institute, covering a wide range of disciplines including ceramics, composites, mining, packaging, polymers and metallurgy, and organising events throughout the year.


  • Applied Earth Science - part of IMMa
  • Automotive Applications
  • Biomedical Applications
  • British Composites Society - composite materials
  • Casting - for the castings industry
  • Ceramics Society - building materials, ceramics, cementitious materials, clay technology, refactories, and whitewares
  • Electronics Applications
  • Energy Materials Group
  • IMMa: International Mining & Minerals Association
  • Iron & Steel Society
  • IVE: The Vitreous Enamellers' Society
  • IWSc: The Wood Technology Society
  • Light Metals
  • Materials Science & Technology
  • MIME: Midland Institute of Mining Engineers
  • Minerals Processing and Extractive Metallurgy - part of IMMa
  • Mining Technology - part of IMMa
  • Natural Materials Association - includes natural fibres
  • Packaging Society
  • Petroleum & Drilling Engineering - part of IMMa, and includes the Mining Institute of Scotland
  • Polymer Society - includes PVC and rubber
  • Surface Engineering - corrosion and adhesives
  • Sustainable Development Group


IOM3 was formed from the merger of the Institute of Materials (IoM) and the Institution of Mining and Metallurgy (IMM) in June 2002.

The Institute's roots go back to the Iron and Steel Institute. In 1869, ironmaster William Menelaus convened and chaired a meeting at the Midland Railway's Queen's Hotel in Birmingham, West Midlands, which led to the founding of the Iron and Steel Institute, which received its Royal Charters in 1899 and 1975. Menelaus was its president from 1875 to 1877, and in 1881 was awarded the Bessemer medal.

The Institute of Materials itself was a merger of The Institute of Metals, The Institute of Ceramics and The Plastics and Rubber Institute (known as the PRI) in 1993. The latter was itself a merger of The Plastics Institute and the Institution of the Rubber Industry (known as the IRI) during the 1980s, a reflection of the declining UK rubber manufacturing industry during this period.

More recent mergers include the Institute of Packaging (2005), the Institute of Clay Technology (2006) the Institute of Wood Science (2009) and the Institute of Vitreous Enamellers (2010).


The Institute ensures that courses in materials, minerals and mining technology and engineering conform to the standards for professional registration with the Engineering Council UK, establishes codes of practice and monitors legislative matters affecting members' professional interests.

The professional development programme run by the Institute helps contribute to members' career enhancement towards senior grades of membership and Chartered Scientist (CSci) and Chartered Engineer (CEng) status.

Members benefit from reduced rates for the Institute's many books, journals and conferences and from access to the Institute's Information Services. These include extensive library resources as well as a team of materials experts who provide consultancy services to Institute members, and to companies who have joined the Institute's Industrial Affiliate Scheme.


The Institute provides a range of activities and initiatives to benefit the materials and mining community.

The Institute's educational activities aim to promote the materials discipline to younger generations by allowing access, through the Schools Affiliate Scheme, to a range of educational resources and materials. The Institute has very close links with schools and colleges and is responsible for accrediting university and college courses and industrial training schemes. The Education Department offers teachers courses and teaching resources on materials, as well as careers advice for students. Many Institute publications such as definitive textbooks are available to students at reduced prices. The Institute also offers a series of Materials World magazine, The Packaging Professional, Clay Technology, and Wood Focus. The Institute's range of learned journals is published by Maney Publishing, including Ironmaking and Steelmaking Journal, Surface Engineering, Powder Metallurgy, Corrosion Engineering, Science and Technology, International Materials Reviews and Materials Science and Technology.


The Materials Information Service is a service of the Institute which has been giving advice to industry on the selection and use of materials since 1988. This is now part of the Institute's Information Services which includes technical enquiry and library services for the materials, minerals and mining sectors, an information help desk, regionally based advisors and related services. Companies can gain access to the Institute's information resources by joining its Industrial Affiliate Scheme.


The Institute's Conference Department organises conferences, events and exhibitions with the Institute's technical committees to help keep members and other delegates informed of the latest developments within the materials, minerals and mining arena. The highlight of the conference calendar is the bi-annual Materials Congress.


The Bessemer Gold Medal is an annual prize awarded by the Institute for "outstanding services to the steel industry". It was established and endowed by Sir Henry Bessemer in 1874. It was first awarded to Isaac Lowthian Bell in 1874. The 2011 award was to Ian Christmas.[3]

In addition to the Bessemer, the Institute has many other significant awards for Personal Achievement and Published Works covering materials, minerals and mining. In particular there are awards covering surface engineering, biomedical materials, ceramics, rubber and plastics, iron and steel and automotive areas. There are also awards covering education and local societies. Details can be accessed here.[4]


  1. ^ The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, Registered Charity no. 269275 at the Charity Commission
  2. ^ Photo at Geograph
  3. ^ Past Bessemer Gold Medal winners
  4. ^

External links

  • Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining


The Institute produces several magazine titles, Materials World, The Packaging Professional, Wood Focus and Clay Technology. The titles are available to members or by subscription.

  • Design exchange: Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining
  • Design exchange: Materials Knowledge Transfer Network
  • Materials Science: Materials Knowledge Transfer Network

Video clips

  • IOM3 YouTube channel
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