The rock mechanics (geomechanical) study for mining at London-listed Amur Minerals’ Kun-Manie project, in Russia, has been completed and approved by authorities, confirming that the project can be implemented as an openpit operation.
The study, compiled by the Mining Institute of the Far Eastern Russian Academy of Sciences (MIFERAS), was based on the regional tectonic setting and project specific data derived from the testing of exploration drill core.
It confirms that openpit operations can be implemented at the Maly Kurumkon/Flangovy and Vodorazdelny deposits, and at the area identified as ISK (the now continuous orebody from Ikenskoe/Sobolevsky through Kubuk).
Differing final pit slope angles and operational parameters accounting for the variability of the geomechanical characteristics unique to the waste and ore rock types of, and within, each deposit have been identified for use in the determination of the final ultimate pit designs and reserve reporting.
For any remaining deeper ores, it has also been confirmed that conventional underground extraction methods can be used.
The MIFERAS work substantially updates previously completed geomechanical analysis undertaken by SRK.
"Once openpit operations are completed, and if the ore located below the ultimate pit limits is substantial, it has also confirmed that late mine life extraction of deeper ores using conventional mining methods can be implemented.
"The rock mechanics evaluation is an important component for the design of all mines. This information and its inputs will form the basis for simultaneously establishing on-going operational safety practices and identification of a life-of-mine ore production schedule,” commented Amur CEO Robin Young.
The Kun-Manie project boasts 155.1-million tonnes of mineralisation, averaging 1.02% nickel equivalent, for 1.58-million nickel-equivalent tonnes.
The average nickel grade is 0.75%, copper is 0.21%, cobalt is 0.015%, platinum is 0.16 g/t and palladium is 0.17 g/t. Additional minor amounts of gold and silver will also be recovered but have not been estimated.
By sulphide nickel equivalent tonnage, Amur is placed in the three largest publically listed greenfield nickel sulphide resource companies in the world and the largest undeveloped nickel sulphide deposit immediately adjacent China, Korea and Japan.