PERTH (miningweekly.com) – Nickel developer Sirius Resources is confident that its Nova-Bollinger project, in the Fraser Range of Western Australia, will come on line in time to cash in on expected improved nickel prices.
The project is expected to produce its first ore by mid-2016, and will ramp up to full production by early 2017.
MD Mark Bennett told the Paydirt Australian Nickel Conference on Thursday that the ramp-up to full production at Nova-Bollinger would coincide with a forecast step change in the nickel price, with the average nickel price expected to be around $10/lb during the ten-year life-of-mine.
A recent scoping study has estimated that at a capital cost of A$471-million, the project could produce 28 000 t/y of nickel and 11 000 t/y of copper in concentrate, over an initial mine life of ten years.
The ore will be processed through a 1.5-million-tonne-a-year processing plant, which will include conventional crushing and milling circuits, followed by a two-stage conventional flotation, plus dewatering and filtration processes.
Bennett noted that a definitive feasibility study for the Nova-Bollinger project was currently under way, and would be completed by mid-2014, with a decision to mine expected shortly after.
Using a flat $0.90/A$1 exchange rate, the project could generate a revenue of some A$4.6-billion and a net cash flow of A$2.8-billion over its mine life.