Anthill Mine Development and Mt Kelly Plant Refurbishment
The Company is focussed on developing its new Anthill Mine and ramping production to 10,000t of copper cathode by mid 2022. Site activities are building momentum with an additional 23 personnel onsite bringing the total to 50 personnel to develop the Anthill Mine and prepare key equipment at the Mt Kelly processing plant.
Anthill Mine Development
Final approval to commence mining at Anthill was received on 25 October 2021. Plant and equipment are being mobilised to site with surface clearance works underway. The pit areas are being cleared with vegetation and topsoil stockpiled for mine rehabilitation prior to the commencement of pre-stripping. Thiess is mobilising its fleet in November whilst clearing and site infrastructure is installed. Bulk overburden mining is planned to commence early January. The first planned blast of ironstone capping over the east pit is scheduled mid November.
Mt Kelly processing plant refurbishment
The Mt Kelly heap leach and SX-EW processing facility is operational and continues producing copper cathode from a 2020 mining campaign. In preparation for Anthill Mine ore deliveries in Q2 next year, sections of the plant are being refurbished to ensure high plant availability to stack and process a planned 5,000tpd of oxide ore. The crushing, agglomeration and stacking system is being upgraded with new conveyor rubber, rollers and safety equipment. The SX-EW plant is being restocked for critical spares and being prepared to increase copper cathode production from the current 200t/month to 1,000t/month. The camp is being prepared to cater for 150 employees and contractors when in full production.
- Site works are underway at the new Anthill Mine and Mt Kelly plant with bulk earthmoving planned to commence in January 2022
- Ore deliveries are scheduled to commence in March/April 2022
- Planned nameplate capacity of 10,000tpa of copper cathode production is anticipated by mid 2022
- Anthill has a four year mine life, expected to deliver 40,000 tonnes of copper cathode
- Exploration and development work is underway to extend mine life and evaluate options to commercialise copper sulphide resources
Steve Tambanis, Chief Executive Officer said:
"It's exciting to see that site works are proceeding as planned with bulk earthmoving to commence in January 2022 and first ore deliveries expected in April 2022. Both Anthill Mine development and Mt Kelly plant refurbishment are progressing to plan. The exploration team is being mobilised with a regional structural review and geophysical studies commencing in November 2021.
Our goal is to achieve planned copper production of 10,000tpa by mid 2022.
Exploration work is underway in preparation for planned drilling to commence Q2 2022.
We look forward to updating investors as key milestones are achieved over the next few months."
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About Austral Resources Australia Ltd
Austral Resources Australia Ltd (ASX:AR1) is a copper cathode producer operating in the Mt Isa region, Queensland, Australia. Its Mt Kelly copper oxide heap leach and solvent extraction/electrowinning (SXEW) plant has a nameplate capacity of 30,000tpa of copper cathode. Austral is developing its Anthill oxide copper mine which has an Ore Reserve of 5.06Mt at 0.94% Cu. The Company expects to produce 40,000t of copper cathode over a four-year period from mid-2022.
Austral owns a significant copper inventory with a JORC compliant Mineral Resource Estimate of 60Mt at 0.7% Cu and 1,940km2 of highly prospective exploration tenure in the heart of the Mt Isa district, a world class copper and base metals province. The Company is implementing an intensive exploration and development programme designed to extend the life of mine and increase then review options to commercialise its copper resources.
Austral Resources Australia Ltd