The first metal has been produced at Hazelwood Resources’ ATC Ferrotungsten Project as the facility completes its hot commissioning schedule. The company’s subsidiary Asia Tungsten Products prepared the plant for production and secured all necessary raw materials during the past month and began the commissioning process.
The production process is challenging due to the greater temperatures required than for other ferroalloy processes. Hazelwood says an experienced team of engineers has implemented the production line successfully for what is believed to be the most advanced, largest ferrotungsten plant outside of China.
The company’s managing director Terry Butler-Blaxell says the first sales revenue is expected this month. “All ferrotungsten produced shall be distributed under a sales agency agreement with Wogen Resources, which has been involved in the trade of minor metals for more than 40 years. Outside China, there is limited production capacity for the master alloy, which is used in the production of high speed steels, tool steels and temperature resistant alloys.”
The ATC project was constructed under-budget and represents a capital-efficient entry into specialty metal production. It has the opportunity to launch into other downstream processing ventures and potential future vertical integration with Hazelwood’s advanced stage primary tungsten projects in Western Australia.
Big Hill is an advanced project with an open pittable, 12-year JORC-compliant ore reserve and is capable of producing an exceptionally pure tungsten feedstock. Hazelwood also has a 70% interest in the Mt Mulgine Project in Western Australia which hosts a near-surface JORC resource.
Hazelwood also has significant exposure to nickel sulphides and base metals through its Cookes Creek and Copper Gorge areas in Western Australia’s East Pilbara. Significant nickel sulphides have been intersected in drilling at Cookes Creek and there are numerous geophysical and geochemical targets over a strike extent of more than 20km yet to be drill tested.
Hazelwood is an emerging specialty metals producer with a majority stake in the ATC. Wogen Resources has the worldwide sales agency for all ferrotungsten produced by ATC and will distribute the product to existing network of customers under a sales financing arrangement.