PERTH (miningweekly.com) – Mineral sands miner Iluka has reported a 17% quarter-on-quarter decline in production for the three months ended March, on the back of kiln maintenance.
Iluka produced 154 000 t of mineral sands during the quarter under review, including 81 600 t of zircon, 44 400 t of rutile and 55 500 t of synthetic rutile. The company also produced 99 000 t of ilmenite during the period under review.
The company told shareholders that major maintenance at the Synthetic Rutile 2 kiln, in Western Australia, resulted in the kiln being off line for some 45 days during the three months under review. This was ahead of the planned 51 days.
The kiln produced 27 000 t of synthetic rutile in the first quarter from stockpiled ilmenite.
Meanwhile, sales revenue for the quarter declined from the A$298.4-million achieved in the December quarter, to A$249.2-million, with zircon sales up from the 81 500 t in the December quarter, to 90 200 t, while rutile sales were up from 50 300 t to 60 500 t, and synthetic rutile sales were down from 58 500 t to 53 800 t in the March quarter.
Ilmenite sales volumes also declined from the 57 200 t in the December quarter to 44 100 t, with ilmenite revenues reported at A$14.9-million, down from the A$19.8-million in the previous quarter.