New Century has announced the shipment of its first zinc concentrate from the recently restarted Century mine to in Queensland to China is scheduled for the end of October.
|Zinc concentrate product in storage tanks and the zinc thickener at the Lawn Hill mine site, ready for pumping to Karumba|
The Company has experienced strong demand for the ‘commissioning concentrate’ currently being produced as part of the load commissioning process, as evidenced by the forward sale of 20,000t of production, with demand for further commissioning grade product if made available.
The forward sale of 20,000t of zinc concentrate during the month of September has generated revenue of AUD$27.2M for the operations, providing New Century with first operational cashflow and full confidence of the continuing sales for all of New Century’s concentrate production.
Concentrate production to date from the Century operations has totalled 7,000t.
Focus of the pipeline and port operations into Q4 2018 will be to maintain uptime, concentrate stockpiling and preparations for export shipments via the refurbished vessel MV Wunma.
The project has continued record daily hydraulic mining rates during the past month and a consistent slurry density of 40 to 50 per cent, above the company’s 37 per cent target.
New Century has reported that the hydraulic mining operations team continued to deliver against an expedited ramp up schedule, with the mining rate already close to the 8.0Mtpa nameplate mining rate for Phase 1 of Century operations.
The comparative speed of the ramp up in the mining rate provides strong evidence of the robust simplicity of Century’s hydraulic mining operations and confidence in the full-scale ramp up to 15.0Mtpa during the scheduled Phase 2 expansion of Century operations.
Focus for the hydraulic mining operations into Q4 2018 is now on ensuring consistent uptime and a feed rate of 8.0Mtpa+ into the processing plant.
As part of the load commissioning process, the plant operations team have also continued to progressively bring concentrate grade toward New Century’s target specification. Steady state production during September continued to achieved good quality saleable zinc concentrate grading 47 to 52 per cent Zn and 3.0 to 6.5 per cent SiO2.
The mine was the third largest zinc mine in the world prior to its closure in 2016 and still hosts mineral resources in excess of 2.6Mt of zinc, 0.7Mt of lead and 42.5Moz of silver.
In November 2017 the mine's owner, New Century Resources raised AUD$52.9 million to restart the mine.