JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Throughout the first six months of this year, TSX-listed Katanga Mining has continued to advance its $437-million Whole Ore Leach (WOL) project, which is set for commissioning to start in the fourth quarter of this year.
The company in September 2015 suspended the processing of copper and cobalt to allow for the construction of the WOL project.
During the six months to June 30, work continued on the structural, mechanical, platework and piping (SMPP) activities on the acid tanks, preleach, leach and CCD trains.
Katanga invested capital expenditure of $69.5-million during the interim period, principally on the installation of the SMPP, electrical, control and instrumentation equipment.
Concurrent with the construction of the WOL project plant and infrastructure, the life-of-mine plan is being optimised to ensure the appropriate blend will be supplied to the WOL process when complete in order to maximise copper and cobalt recovery and to minimise operating cost per unit.
Meanwhile, mining operations have continued at the KOV and the Mashamba East openpits, with a focus on waste mining.
Waste mined in the first half of the year was 17.02-million tonnes, a 624.2% increase on waste mined in the first half of 2016, as the company prepares for the commissioning of the WOL project.
The WOL project will result in the production of 300 000 t/y of copper cathode and 22 000 t/y of cobalt hydroxide.