Ora Banda Mining Limited (ASX:OBM) has successfully recommissioned and poured first gold poured at the Davyhurst Gold Process Plant, located 120km north west of Kalgoorlie in the Eastern Goldfields of Western Australia.
All supporting infrastructure required to sustain ongoing processing activities at the Davyhurst gold processing plant’s rated capacity of 1.2 Mtpa is now in place and has been commissioned. This includes the new 8.25MW gas and diesel fired power station, extensively upgraded and commissioned bore fields (for both potable and process water supply), process plant chemical storage facilities, upgraded road infrastructure for ore supply routes and an upgraded 172 room camp at Davyhurst.
Practical completion for the remedial work program undertaken was achieved on January 24, 2021 following which a commissioning blend of low-grade oxide and transitional ore stock together with primary ore from Golden Eagle underground was introduced into the plant.
Processing operations are currently stable and running at a throughput rate approaching 1.0Mtpa with targeted grind size of P80 – 106μ being achieved. Through-put will continue to ramp in line with the DFS schedule.
Managing Director, David Quinlivan, said the gold pour marks a significant milestone for Ora Banda and its transition from developer to producer.
We are pleased to reach this important milestone and congratulate all who have been involved on the accomplishment,” Mr Quinlivan said.
“It has been an impressive team effort to deliver this project into production under the uniquely challenging circumstances of 2020 and 2021.
Our focus now remains on the continued ramp up of activity as we progress toward steady state and the ultimate goal of delivering a long-life and sustainable gold operation.”
Mining commenced in late October with mining rates steadily increasing over the three month period to January 31, 2021. Total material movement as at 31 January 2021 of 830,000 bcm is slightly ahead of the DFS target. Ore mining is also ahead of DFS schedule with production as at January 31, 2021, inclusive of low- grade ores, with 154,000 ore tonnes mined at a grade of 1.3 grams per tonne for 6,372 ounces of contained gold.
Mining has progressed steadily through the upper levels of the pit which have been predominantly “free dig”. Some light drill and blast has commenced in at the northern end of the pit.
A second round of grade control drilling has also commenced. Results to date confirm that the pre-mining Ore Reserve expectation is being met.
All supporting infrastructure required to sustain the mining operations is now in place. This includes office and workshop facilities, an extensive road network and the new 64 room camp. The first of Ora Banda’s Riverina employees have commenced relocating from the Davyhurst camp to the Riverina camp with remaining Riverina camp rooms being progressively occupied in line with shift roster changeover dates.
Strengthening of the long-term water supply infrastructure for dust suppression and ongoing road maintenance continues.
Dewatering of the Golden Eagle underground mine is complete with only minimal ground support rectification works required post dewatering and development has commenced on a number of levels.
Preparations for the commencement of stope production is currently in progress with the first stope production stope blast scheduled for mid-February.