Magnetite Mines firms up Razorback’s potential for higher grade, lower cost iron ore
20 Aug 2020
Special Report: Studies have shown that selective mining of Magnetite Mines’ 4-billion-tonne Razorback iron ore mine in South Australia could significantly boost the economics of the project.
Initial studies have confirmed the lateral continuity of high-grade iron ore horizons within the existing resource are potentially amenable to selective mining, a method used successfully by major iron ore miners like Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG).
When combined with complementary ore sorting, selective mining these higher-grade horizons could deliver higher-grade ore to the processing plant.
Higher plant head grades would result in higher tonnages of ore produced compared to an equivalent conventional bulk mining and processing scenario with potential advantages in operating and capital cost efficiency.
“What this will do, if we can put it all together and make it work which we obviously think we can, it’s got the potential to significantly increase the head grade,” Magnetite Mines director Mark Eames told Stockhead.
“It may be a gamechanger for us, it’s a potential step change in the economics.”
Eames said selective mining would significantly reduce water and electricity costs for the project. “Water is one of our big constraints because we’re using groundwater, so it’s much more efficient in terms of water use, it’s much more efficient in terms of electricity use and it has the potential to substantially reduce that cost,” he explained. “We’ve already got very promising results from the scoping study with the bulk mining last year. This selective mining opportunity will further enhance the economics and make the project much more efficient and potentially, over time, much larger.”
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