Stellar Diamonds Raises 1.85M to Begin Trial Mining at Baoule
Diamond development company Stellar Diamonds plc is making huge strides with its Baoule kimberlite diamond project in Guinea, West Africa.
The company has announced It is focused on fast tracking trial mining at the five hectare Baoule kimberlite pipe and will use its existing in-country mining plant and equipment for the trials.
It expects plant commissioning by the end of August and its objective is to generate early cash flow and determine the diamond grades and value.
Historical data suggests grades of between 13 and 40cpht and diamond value in excess of US$200/ct. The site has internal resource target (non JORC) of three million carats to 300m depth.
The diamondiferous Baoulé pipe is located in the heart of the Aredor diamond district of Guinea which has historically yielded very large, high value diamonds from alluvial mining.
Stellar Diamonds Chief Executive, Karl Smithson, said: “We have already made progress establishing the local infrastructure for the project and we are in the process of relocating our significant earth moving and kimberlite processing plant, already located in Guinea, to the Baoulé pipe.
“We expect to commission the processing plant in August 2014 and our recently completed financing means that Stellar is fully funded to move Baoulé into the trial mining stage and in-turn cash flow."
“We are also fully funded to continue bulk sampling and diamond value modelling for the definitive feasibility study underway at our 1.1 million carat Tongo kimberlite project in Sierra Leone.
“I look forward to reporting on developments from both of our exciting diamond developments over the coming months in what has already been a highly active year for Stellar.”
Stellar is in the process of dismantling and relocating its 100 tonne per hour DMS processing plant which was used for mining at the Mandala alluvial diamond project in Guinea.
In addition, the five tonne per hour DMS sampling plant located at the Droujba diamond project in Guinea has already been dismantled and is about to be transported to Baoulé.
The Company has retained ADP Metco to erect the plants in such a way that they will be combined to make a fully integrated kimberlite processing plant with a capacity of 100 tonnes an hour.
A company will shortly be appointed to undertake an independent environmental impact assessment at the Baoulé project, ahead of the commencement of trial mining and in accordance with governmental requirements.
Road upgrading, camp and plant infrastructure is well advanced and repairs and maintenance of selected mine fleet earth moving vehicles has commenced. This will enable a kimberlite stockpile to be established while the plant construction is on-going.
The expected timetable is that the processing plant will be ready to commission and process initial diamondiferous and weathered kimberlite material by the end of August 2014. Once the plant is operating efficiently then trial mining production will commence.
Stellar is an AIM quoted (AIM: STEL) West African focused diamond development company which is also progressing the 1.1 million carat Tongo Dyke-1 resource in Sierra Leone through a definitive feasibility study.
In addition, Stellar holds the three million carat Droujba project in Guinea and continues to pursue both diplomatic and legal channels to ensure the proper reinstatement of its Kono licences in Sierra Leone.
Anglo American: FutureSmart Mining
Anglo American’s approach to technology, digitalisation and sustainability is changing the nature of the way the company mines. These are the step-change innovations that will transform the nature of mining – how the company sources, mines, processes, moves and markets its products – and how its stakeholders experience that business. Anglo American is transforming its physical and societal footprint with FutureSmart Mining.
“FutureSmart Mining is our innovation-led approach to sustainable mining,” Anglo American’s Tom McCulley told Mining Gllobal. In his role as CEO for Anglo American Peru & Group Head of Projects he has overseen investment of more than $5bn at the company’s Quellaveco copper project in Peru.
“These are the step-change innovations that will transform the nature of mining – how we source, mine, process, move and market our products – and how our stakeholders experience our business. It’s about transforming our physical and societal footprint.”
Anglo is undertaking a feasibility study to assess the possibility of rolling out one of its FutureSmart technologies, Coarse Particle Recovery (CPR), at Quellaveco. “CPR crushes particles to 2.5 times larger than normal, reducing energy consumption and mill time, leading to a 20% increase in throughput and 85% water recovery - a key issue in Peru given the concerns around water scarcity,” says McCulley.
“By allowing water to release from the much coarser particles, CPR will reduce the risks associated with wet tailings and ultimately help eliminate them altogether. When combined with low cost additives, it is possible to dewater residual waste and produce dry stackable tailings. This technology remains a focus area for us as water sent to tailings facilities often represents the largest water loss at a mine.”
Quellaveco is going to be the first mine to run the FutureSmart operating model from day one. Anglo’s idea is to build a stable base on which it can layer new technologies, CPR being one of them.
“We will also be a fully digital mine, which brings us future benefits in terms of understanding and applying changes in real time,” adds McCulley. “Our trucks and our drills will be automation-ready. We have taken the approach that, when we decide to move into an autonomous operation, no jobs will be lost, but the nature of some people’s jobs will have to change.”
FutureSmart is a blend of technology and sustainability,” said McCulley in an interview with Global Business Reports. “If you go back to the vision and design of Quellaveco, it has really been focused on the long-term sustainability of the mine through effective use of things like water, energy and the environment. Quellaveco has been focused on technology such as automation, with digital and analytical tools all coming together. We will be looking at future technologies to bolt on as we go to ensure that we are optimizing the sustainable use of resources and remaining cost-effective.”
Anglo American’s Quellaveco copper project in Peru has created 15,000 jobs during construction and approximately 2,500 jobs are planned for operations, increasing Peru’s copper production by a forecast 300,000 tonnes per year. The mine’s first copper production is expected in 2022. To learn more about Anglo American's Quellaveco copper project read our feature here.