Perth-based dual commodity company NSL Consolidated has achieved another milestone in its transition to ‘producer’ status by successfully completing the first full load test of its Kurnool dry separation iron ore plant in India’s south east.

Run of Mine (ROM) ore from NSL’s nearby Mangal iron ore mine was run through the entire Kurnool circuit, which enabled validation of alignment and calibration of all components of the crushing, screening and dry separation plant.

NSL is the only foreign company to own and operate iron ore mines in India and is on schedule to commission the first phase of the Kurnool plant while final optimization of the process, which is capable of producing ore of up to 58% iron, is completed.

Kurnool is on a 4 hectare industrial site within the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. It uses the nearby Mangal mine as an iron source as well as the adjacent existing Kuja iron mine, which is also owned by NSL.

NSL says a gradual ramp up in production and sales tonnages towards the targeted phase 1 production capacity of 200,000 tonnes per annum will be achieved during the third quarter of this year.

The phase 2 wet beneficiation plant for Kurnool, capable of producing final product grades of up to 62% iron, will be brought into operation later in 2012 with completion and anticipated sales in the first half 2013. This is targeted to increase annual production capacity by an additional 200,000 tonnes to a total of 400,000 tonnes.

NSL’s managing director Cedric Goode says domestic demand and pricing for iron ore remains strong. He says the company is discussing several approaches from businesses seeking to secure off-take from Kurnool.

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