JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – West Africa-focused Bellzone Mining on Monday reported that it had completed key project activities to finalise the detailed feasibility study and further extend the iron-ore resources at the Kalia project in Guinea.
CEO Graham Fyfe said the Aim-listed iron-ore and nickel company was confident of achieving its study and resource development objectives and starting construction at the Kalia mine before year-end.
“The resource development plans and detailed feasibility study at the Kalia mine have been progressing well through 2011 and remain on schedule,” he noted.
He added that, since the release of the 3,74-billion ton Joint Ore Reserves Committee (Jorc) update in September 2010, the magnetite resource development programme had focused on completing an infill plan to further upgrade the existing 670-million ton measured and indicated Jorc resource.
This programme was completed in the first week of April and the Kalia I Jorc-resource upgrade was expected to be complete in the third quarter of 2011.
Bellzone reported that it has also completed the airborne light detection and ranging surveys, providing 0,5 m topographic contours of the Kalia permit area to provide critical input to plant layout design and bulk earthworks costing, as well as tailings storage facility site selection and design.
Contracts had been awarded to undertake the site geotechnical and hydrological engineering, providing key inputs to finalise the mine plan and site civil engineering requirements.
Fyfe said magnetite bulk test-work was completed, validating the production of a 68% iron-ore concentrate with low deleterious elements, as well as magnetite metallurgical test-work, which was critical to the design of flowsheets and equipment requirements.
“Oxide metallurgical test-work undertaken confirmed that a quality product is achievable through standard processing techniques, while oxide test-work conducted for ore with beneficiation potential provided input into the flowsheet development and equipment selection,” he added.
Looking forward, Fyfe said that the Kalia magnetite development plan was to undertake a wide spaced drilling campaign of the Kalia II magnetite. This drilling campaign, the first on Kalia II, had started and would take about six months to complete.
The draft socioeconomic impact assessment and environmental impact assessment reports were also completed.