THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Metallica Minerals (ASX: MLM) has received results from further analysis of Direct Shipping Bauxite (DS Bauxite) at the Company’s Urquhart Point bauxite project near Weipa on Queensland’s Cape York Peninsula.
According to Metallica the results have demonstrated the ability of the project to produce high available alumina recovery.
The results also returned moderate reactive silica levels from the Area A bauxite deposit located southeast of where the company is currently constructing its zircon-rutile heavy mineral sand (HMS) minerals processing plant at Urquhart Point, to be commissioned later this year.
Metallica considers the average grade of 40 per cent available alumina with 4.9 per cent reactive silica at Area A to be well within the market criteria favoured by importers of quality bauxite.
“The ratio between available alumina and reactive silica influences eventual price premiums, and supply and volume opportunities,” Metallica Minerals managing director Andrew Gillies said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.
“These latest results, and February’s work shows that Area A has a high-grade bauxite footprint and provides a confident foundation on which to continue evaluations of the project.
“This will now include resource estimation, the commencement of permitting and potential mining plan design.
“The Area A resource estimation and scoping study are both planned for completion by June.
“In addition to DS bauxite there is expected to be significant lower grade bauxite tonnages which could be potentially upgraded to achieve export quality bauxite by the additional of beneficiation (primarily screening) to selectively reduce (by removing) the fines fraction (< 1.5mm) of the pisolitic bauxite which generally contain the higher in-situ silica content and also to improve material handling characteristics.
“Based on the extent of Area A’s DS bauxite mineralisation, its bauxite quality and its close proximity to our HMS development and the adjoining Weipa port, we believe, the project it is very likely to be of sufficient size to support a very cost-effective mine-truck-barge-ship operation.”