King River Resources Limited (ASX: KRR) is making strong advances with key components of the Pre-Feasibility Study (PFS) for its Speewah Speciality Metals (SMM) Project in Western Australia.
Chairman, Anthony Barton, said that with exploration at the company’s exploration assets in northern Australia are shut down due to the wet season, the company is now fully focused on four area within the PFS programme.
Mr Barton said all four areas are progressing well. They are:
Metallurgy and Process Flowsheet Development.
Beneficiation magnetic separation testwork and sulphuric acid leaching tests are nearing completion at Nagrom in Perth. This testwork will provide the final parameters for input into the PFS. Hydrometallurgical refining testwork by TSW Analytical in Perth is focussing on producing a >99.99% high purity alumina (>4N HPA) product and increasing the final purification efficiencies. A 99.98% Al2O3 HPA was successfully produced in late 2019.
Final steps are underway but have been delayed and will take longer than planned due to disruption caused by the coronavirus protocols and some equipment issues.
Mr Barton said that new ideas have also been presented to potentially improve recovery efficiencies and reduce reagent consumptions, which are presently being investigated.
“We do not expect this extended completion of testwork to have an impact on our other activities.”
Process Plant Design and Costings
Como Engineers is progressing work on the process plant and remains on track for delivery pending the final flowsheet parameters. This work will provide estimates of the capital and operating costs for the PFS.
Mining Study and Reserve Estimate.
CSA Global has completed the initial pit optimisations and the pit designs for the HPA scenario, and will be completing the mining schedule and is starting on the mining cost estimate.
Environmental, Social and Permitting Study
Animal Plant Mineral (APM) is updating the environmental and social studies for a smaller scale HPA operation. This will include background studies into the permitting requirements for the project.
Mr Barton said each of these four activities is critical for completion of the PFS and is well advanced.
“Our plan remains to complete the PFS and then evaluate market conditions before accelerating toward completion of a definitive feasibility study.
“While uncertainly exists with respect to the duration of the current economic slowdown, it is clear that the future is bright for the HPA business.
“We anticipate positive developments in coming weeks.”
KRR’s Vanadium Project is the largest vanadium-in-magnetite deposit in Australia with the highest vanadium grade in the magnetite concentrate.