Modern Mining December 2017


‘Smart Ore Movement’ planned for Gamsberg

available information about the state of the mine, the quality of ore, the conditions of the concentrator and the value of the product are not only made available to the mine management team in real-time, but that the information is presented in such a way that it allows for minute-by-minute decision-making. The ‘Smart Ore Movement’ initiative allows business information to be derived from spatial data which has its source in disparate and standalone systems that will provide the ability to blend near real- time and manage adherence to the plan; ensure effective grade control; and allow continuous spatial reconciliation of actual production against plan. The initiative will allow the Gamsberg management team to apply appropri- ate operational insight and to ultimately co-act with the mining contractor to effec- tively manage the mine’s key performance indicators which are critical levers influenc- ing the variance between the predicted and actual mine feed to plant. Ultimately, says VZI, the aim is for Gams­ berg to be a ‘best-in-class’ operation – one that is safe, efficient and sustainable, and that delivers benefits to a broad range of stakeholders. The first phase of the Gamsberg proj- ect is expected to have a mine life of 13 years, replacing the production lost by the closure of the Lisheen mine in Northern Ireland. Once commissioned, it is expected that the mine will take 9-12 months to ramp up to full production capacity of 250 000 t/a of zinc-in-concentrate. Cost of production is estimated at US$1 000 to US$1 150 per tonne.  licence, which is consistent with our strategy to target raw materials and technologies geared to accelerating growth in the elec- tric vehicle market,” says Alexander Lemon, President of Mkango.“Both nickel and cobalt are increasingly in demand as cathodemate- rials for batteries in electric vehicles. “This new licence, when combined with the Songwe Hill rare earths project and our collaboration with Metalysis on neo- dymium alloys for permanent magnets, positions Mkango as a potential future supplier of the critical raw materials used in both batteries and permanent magnet motors in electric vehicles.” 

A view of the Gamsberg site showing the plant area in the foreground and the access road to the mining area (photo: VZI).

Vedanta Zinc International (VZI) says that its Gamsberg zinc project near Aggeneys in the Northern Cape, currently under con- struction and due to start production in mid-2018, will be one of the most digitally advanced new mining projects in Africa. According to the company, Gamsberg’s design and construction has aimed to be at the forefront of this digitalisation revolu- tion from the start of operation. “For VZI, the digital transformation is not something that is planned in years to come, but one that is taking shape today,” says the company.“Great strides have been made in recent years in the development of smart technology and equipment. This has given impetus to VZI’s ‘Adapt and Thrive’

approach. The next wave in both invest- ment and implementation will be in the integration of these systems to enable our teams to make data-driven decisions to find efficiencies, improve planning, lower risk, create safer working environments and unlock more value from our resources.” In November 2017, VZI announced a significant collaboration initiative with global innovation giant, GE, and leading mining software developer, MineRP. The first component of this collaboration will be the launch of ‘Smart Ore Movement’ at Gamsberg, withmore developments to fol- low in the coming months. The concept of ‘Smart Ore Movement’ centres on the need to ensure that all indicate exploration potential for additional nickel/cobalt mineralisation Mkango will re-evaluate the Chimimbe Hill deposit in the context of geophysical data produced by the recent World Bank airborne geophysical survey of Malawi, as well as recent infrastructure develop- ments in the region. The company also sees potential synergies with its Songwe Hill rare earths project and Thambani uranium-tan- talum-niobium project, both in Malawi. “We are delighted to have been granted the Chimimbe Hill nickel/cobalt exploration

Mkango Resources awarded exploration licence Mkango Resources, listed on AIM and the TSX-V, has announced that it has been granted an exclusive prospecting right covering the Chimimbe Hill nickel/cobalt deposit and other targets in Mchinji district, central Malawi.

The Chimimbe Hill licence covers an area of 98,48 km 2 and features laterite- and saprolite-hosted nickel, cobalt, chrome and other mineralisation. Significant historical exploration has been completed, including pitting, drilling and metallurgical test work. Magnetic anomalies in the licence area

8  MODERN MINING  December 2017

Made with FlippingBook Annual report