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Diamcor looks to continue operational upgrades at South Africa project

12th January 2023

By: Tasneem Bulbulia

Senior Contributing Editor Online


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Junior miner Diamcor Mining notes in an operations and corporate update for its Krone-Endora at Venetia project, in South Africa’s Limpopo province, that various operational upgrades were advanced during the second half of 2022.

Higher revenue was also achieved, despite the ongoing power outages experienced throughout South Africa in 2022 which negatively affected processing volumes.

The company’s focus this year will remain on additional operational advancements to support the increase of processing volumes over the long term.

The key near-term objectives are to install supplemental power systems, additional large material processing and diamond recovery systems, the procurement of additional heavy equipment and to further advance recommended exploration drilling and bulk sampling efforts to further expand the company’s understanding of the geotechnical aspects and the greater potential of the project.

Diamcor says it successfully completed various upgrades as envisioned throughout 2022.

These included the procurement of additional screening equipment, the development and installation of various items to lower water consumption on a per ton basis, the improvement of water recoveries from processing, and initial expansions and improvements to the project’s final recovery systems.

Together, these improvements, along with a host of other items, lowered operational costs while improving efficiencies and recoveries for the long-term, Diamcor notes.

While power supply interruptions had impacted on the company’s overall processing volume potential owing to lost operational hours, the upgrades were successfully completed and demonstrated the project’s processing plant’s capabilities to achieve increases in processing volumes hourly of up to 70% over historical levels, Diamcor says.

The collective upgrades completed also demonstrated their ability to achieve the company’s goal of not only increasing the project’s hourly processing volumes, but to do so while lowering operating costs on a per ton basis, Diamcor highlights.

The screening improvements have also shown their ability to reduce consumables and provide additional benefits with materials handling and heavy equipment cycle times.

As part of the evaluation of operations during 2022, the company identified several solutions to supplement the project’s current power systems with suitable cost-effective systems to minimise the impact of potential future loadshedding in South Africa by State-run national power supplier Eskom.

The company sees this as one of the key items to be undertaken early in 2023 and believes that, once completed, there will be further improvements to processing volumes given the resulting increase in operational hours.

These efforts include the installation of a larger standby generator at the project’s main treatment plant, battery backup systems to bridge time between power outages and the switch to generator power and power conditioning equipment to improve the overall quality of the power being supplied.

This, in turn, is expected to have positive impacts on the processing plant’s electrical systems, improving power supply quality and variability, and thus lowering maintenance costs.

Diamcor successfully advanced several objectives in 2022 which allowed it to demonstrate the project’s processing plant’s abilities to achieve increased processing volumes on an hourly basis. 

The further growth in processing volumes has been planned throughout 2022 and will include the installation of high-volume processing equipment that will deal specifically with the larger size fractions of material at the project, allowing material to be screened into two specific size fractions, which is expected to further increase overall processing capacities by as much as 75%. 

This enhancement will also incorporate additional in-pit screening to provide the benefit of yet further efficiencies in materials hauling and immediate rehabilitation, Diamcor says.

The company’s efforts to date have been largely focused on the recommended initial drilling and bulk sampling exercises, followed by the development of the project’s infrastructure, processing plants, and the current trial mining exercises over an initial area of about 657.71 ha of the project’s total about 5 888 ha.

With the advancement of the upgrades to the project’s processing plants now largely completed as envisioned, Diamcor plans to proceed early in this year with the continuation of drilling and bulk sampling on several extended portions of the confluence area which extend out from the current trial mining area.

These drilling and bulk sampling exercises do not require any significant additional permitting, and are planned to take place in conjunction with current ongoing operations at the project, the company outlines.

Edited by Chanel de Bruyn
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online



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