EIT RawMaterials
Co-funded by the EU
Atlantic Copper

Apply for participation in the Open Innovation Challenge for Young Talents with Atlantic Copper for sustainable solutions in copper metallurgy!

Challenge Overview

Atlantic Copper, in collaboration with EIT RawMaterials, is pleased to announce the Open Innovation Challenge for Young Talents. This initiative seeks to attract innovative proposals for the recuperation of valuable materials within a primary copper smelting process.

Fluorspar and arsenic have been recognized as Critical Raw Materials (CRM) by the EU in 2023 due to their supply risk and economic importance, crucial to sectors ranging from metallurgy to chemicals and electronics. The major application area for arsenic compounds in the EU is the production of zinc together with the manufacture of glass. The chemicals industry mainly produces other arsenic compounds, as well as ultra-pure arsenic metal for the semiconductor and electronics industry.

The task at hand is to devise sustainable extraction and utilization methods for these CRM (Critical Raw Materials) from the streams of copper metallurgy industry, thereby transforming an environmental challenge into valuable resources.


Collaborate with a global industrial player


Each member of the winning team will receive €500, as cash or as a traveler’s cheque


Develop and apply innovative ideas to advance the sustainability in copper metallurgy

Who Can Participate?

We are calling upon up-and-coming professionals, including those currently pursuing or having recently completed master’s degrees, to register their interest to participate in the selection of the teams to compete in the Open Innovation challenge and have an opportunity to develop and apply their innovative ideas to advance the sustainability in copper metallurgy.

Candidates should be second year master students or have recently graduated in master studies fields such as Metallurgy, Chemical Engineering, or any discipline related to the raw material value chain, with a preference for those specializing in Copper Metallurgy or Technology Validation. A robust technical background is required, and prior experience in the sector is highly desirable. Proficiency in Spanish is considered advantageous. Fluency in English is a mandatory prerequisite.


Process and Prizes

Selected participants will have an opportunity to team up and work together on designing the solution for the technical challenge.

All selected teams will be offered an all-expenses-paid trip to Atlantic Copper’s facilities in Huelva, Spain, for a chance to refine and present their solutions.

This is a unique opportunity to make an impression on the Atlantic Copper industry leaders and to be considered for future career opportunities within the company.

The winning team will be announced at an exclusive award ceremony.

In addition, each member of the winning team will be rewarded with €500, which can be received either as cash or as a traveler’s cheque.

Key dates

  • Launch of registration of interest: March 14, 2024
  • Registration deadline: April 19, 2024
  • Selection of the teams: April 29, 2024
  • Presentation of the challenge: May 1, 2024 (TBC)
  • Selected teams working remotely on developing the challenge: May 1 – 30, 2024
  • Final week in Huelva (presentation of each team): June 4-6, 2024

Finalists’ week at Huelva, Spain

The finalists will be invited to the Atlantic Copper facilities in Huelva, Spain, where they will work alongside experts to improve and apply their proposed solution. At the end of the week, the winner will be chosen by a jury and announced at the facilities in a final ceremony.

Deadline for registering your interest

19 April 2024

About Atlantic Copper

Atlantic Copper is the world’s second-largest copper producer and a major producer of gold and molybdenum. It plays a key role in providing crucial metals for decarbonisation and the energy transition.

Based in Huelva, Spain, Atlantic Copper operates a metallurgical complex near the Marismas del Odiel, a UNESCO-listed biosphere reserve. This location demonstrates the company’s approach to balancing industrial activity with nature conservation.

An industry leader in safety, environmental protection, and energy efficiency, Atlantic Copper processes over a million tons of ore yearly at its Huelva plant, producing approximately 300,000 metric tons of refined copper.

With a workforce of more than 1,000 people, Atlantic Copper is a pivotal player in advancing sustainable development through its vital metal production.