Modern Mining February 2019


resource, with a relatively low strip ratio, and a geome- try that lends itself to staged development,” he said. “It is ideal for open-pit mining. “We also have very little oxidation of the ore which was definitely a problem for Boseto and contributed to low metallurgical recov- eries. In general, our ore is of excellent quality. It is easily processed, has few deleterious elements and will allow us to produce a very high-grade 30 to 34 % concentrate, which is con- siderably higher than the global average of 24 %.” He adds that Boseto

– which was designed during a period when the copper price was as high as US$4,40/lb – was impacted by declining copper prices over the entire time it was in operation, a trend which only reversed in 2016. The T3 mine – unlike Boseto – will also ben- efit from having access to grid power, with the Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) currently working on a massive P4,8 billion project (the North West Transmission Grid (NWTG) project) to extend the grid to the north-west of the coun- try. Said Hanna: “We would expect to have grid power by 2020 but our intention is to install a diesel power station on site to ensure that we can start-up the mine. We are planning for up to two years of diesel power generation although in practice this might not be necessary.” At a 3 Mt/a throughput, T3 would produce approximately 30 kt/a of Cu. The plant, how- ever, is being designed to be easily expandable to 3,5 Mt/a. MOD has a range of options within what it calls its T3 expansion project – which encompasses the 700 km 2 T3 Dome complex – to supply additional ore to the proposed T3 plant, including the more than 5 km long A4 Dome, where 18 of 20 holes completed to date have intersected vein-hosted and NPF contact mineralisation. The NPF (Ngwako Pan Formation) contact is an important regional target in the Kalahari Copperbelt as it hosts substantial deposits including the 100 Mt at 2 % Cu Zone 5 resource of Khoemacau Copper Mining. Just 8 km from the T3 site, the A4 Dome deposit lends itself to underground mining and a preliminary, conceptual underground mining

study has been undertaken by independent international underground mining consultants Entech, with inputs from one of Australia’s leading underground mining service providers Barminco, a subsidiary of Ausdrill. The study evaluated a model based on developing decline access to the NPF contact, using room-and- pillar ore extraction of higher-grade contact mineralisation and long hole open stoping of the overlying, disseminated mineralisation. Beyond the T3 expansion project, MOD is also currently working on the regional scale T20 project, a huge, roughly 3 350 km 2 tene- ment area located 100 km south-west of T3, which includes the T23 Dome and the T4 pros- pect. T23 is the first of the targets within the T20 project to be drilled, with mineralisation encountered in all three holes drilled thus far. Looking ahead, Hanna told Modern Mining that MOD would continue to fast-track the T3 project while continuing its aggressive explo- ration programme on the multiple prospects it has within its tenements. “We believe that the T3 deposit represents just the tip of a very large iceberg,” he said. “The Kalahari Copperbelt is still under-explored and potentially hosts a very significant resource of copper beyond what has already been discovered. Certainly we’re very proud of the role MOD has played in highlighting the potential of the region and look forward with anticipation to bringing T3 on stream within the next couple of years.” Photos courtesy of MOD Resources

The extensive tenements of MOD Resources cover 11 679 km 2 and are located to the south-west of those held by Cupric Canyon. Tshukudu Metals Botswana is MOD’s subsidiary in Botswana.

“We are planning for up to two years of diesel power generation

although in practice this might not be necessary.”

February 2019  MODERN MINING  25

Made with FlippingBook Learn more on our blog