Australian resource company TNG earlier this month appointed mining services consultancy Snowden to complete the feasibility study (FS) needed to bring its Mount Peake titanium, vanadium and iron polymetallic project, in Australia, into production.
Geotechnical drilling has already started with the FS stage also involving a mineral resource estimation update and geotechnical and mining studies aimed at releasing an updated mineral reserve.
Snowden, which has been involved in the project since 2012, when it completed the prefeasibility study, will be project-managing the study and compiling the reports from a number of consultants into a complete FS report.
The Mount Peake project – located in Australia’s Northern Territory, 235 km north-northwest of Alice Springs, in the prospective Arunta province – is strategically close to existing power and transport infrastructure, including the Alice Springs–Darwin railway, the Stuart highway and the LPG pipeline, 20 km to the east.
The project comprises exploration licences covering more than 1 900 km2 and has a total resource estimate of 160-million tonnes at 0.28% vanadium, 5% titanium and 23% iron, 118-million tonnes of which have recently been upgraded to measured status.
Meanwhile, in August last year, Snowden was appointed by exploration and resources company Syrah Resources as responsible author for the bankable feasibility study (BFS) for its Balama graphite and vanadium project in the town of Pemba, Mozambique.
Snowden was granted overall responsibility for delivering the BFS, with inputs from engineering consulting company Knight Piésold, responsible for the tailings dam; environmental management and impact assessment company Environmental & Coastal Services, responsible for environmental and social work; engineering firm Chalieco, respon-sible for plant design; logistics company A&C Hickey Solution Development, respon- sible for logistics; SRK Consulting, a firm of mining consultants and scientists, responsible for geotechnical work; and engineering company Intech Engineer, responsible for infrastructure work.
Snowden has significant experience with the Balama project, having prepared the 2013 Balama West scoping study.
The scope of the BFS is to consider a two-million-ton-a-year operation that will produce up to 280 000 t/y of graphite product, assuming an average head grade of 15% total graphitic carbon.