Capricorn Metals has kicked off commissioning at the Karlawinda gold project in Western Australia, on its way to a goal of first production by the end of June.

Commissioning began after ball mill installation as well as the construction of the tailings storage facility and an 18-megawatt gas-fired power station. A 40-kiometre lateral gas pipeline and delivery station are also now operational.

The borefield for process water supply is operational and process water dam full, ready to commence filling CIL tanks, and belts have been installed on all plant conveyors.

The project’s structural installation is complete, with mechanical and electrical installations nearly done. Static commissioning has started on numerous items of equipment; additionally, MACA Mining has mobilised the second 200-tonne excavator (three in full fleet by December 2021) to the site as it will be needed to ramp up to full operations.

Capricorn’s current plan is to commence crushing and milling activities, or full wet commissioning, by mid-June to allow the loading of gold in circuit (GIC). Targeted first gold production should be realised by the end of June.

“Our construction team and key contractors have done a great job to get the project to commissioning on time and budget against the significant headwinds of COVID-19, adverse weather and skilled labour shortages,” said executive chairman Mark Clark.

“We will now redouble our efforts to fully commission the processing plant and transition to operations as quickly and efficiently as possible.”