VANCOUVER (miningweekly.com) – Peru-focused gold explorer and project developer Lupaka Gold has appointed consulting engineering firm SRK Consulting Canada the lead contractor to prepare a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) on its 100%-owned Invicta gold project.
Invicta is an advanced-stage gold/copper polymetallic underground deposit located about 120 km by road north of Lima.
"We believe that moving ahead with a PEA is the next step towards demonstrating the economic potential of Invicta, affirming what we believe is a robust project based on our internal mining studies and the extensive due diligence conducted by our lender, PLI Huaura Holdings (Pandion Mine Finance),” noted Lupaka president and CEO Will Ansley in a news release.
Lupaka said it had decided on SRK based on the company's expertise and extensive experience with deposits similar to Invicta. SRK also provides a seamless continuity of project knowledge as the project's 2012 resources estimate was prepared by SRK and Lupaka's own internal mining studies of Invicta were prepared with assistance from SVS Ingenieros of Lima, Peru, a subsidiary of the SRK Consulting Group.
Lupaka expects the PEA to be completed before the end of March, 2018.
While the approved environmental impact assessment allows for mine production of 1 000 t/d, the PEA will focus on an initial mining rate of 350 t/d, and will update the existing mineral resource to conform with the current metal price environment. Transmin Metallurgical Consultants, a metallurgical consulting firm in South America, will be responsible for reviewing metallurgy, as well as processing and recoveries.
Invicta currently holds compliant measured resources of 131 000 t grading 6.65 g/t gold equivalent, for 28 000 oz of gold, and an indicated resource of 8.5-million tonnes grading 3.43 g/t gold equivalent, for 939 000 oz of contained gold.
The existing inferred resource classification estimates 2.53-million tonnes of ore grading 2.9 g/t gold equivalent, to hold 236 000 oz of contained gold.
The 2012 mineral resources were based on a 1.3 g/t gold-equivalent cutoff, assuming a gold price of $1 500/oz, $32.50/oz silver, $3.90/lb copper, $1.05/lb for lead and $1/lb zinc.