The project, located at Pilgangoora in Western Australia, is approximately 123km drive from the town of Port Hedland. Road access to the site is via the Great Northern Highway and then Shire roads and station tracks. The Pilgangoora Mining Lease tenements, covering the resource modelling area, are M45/1230 and M45/1231 and cover an area of 394 hectares.
The Pilgangoora deposit will be extracted by open pit methods enhanced by the shallow and thick mineralisation allowing spodumene ore to be extracted from the commencement of mining. Construction of the mine is underway covering mining, processing, logistics and support infrastructure. Mining and processing will commence at the rate of of 1.54Mtpa of ore to produce approximately 230,000 tonnes of lithium spodumene concentrate per annum in first half of 2018. The current life of mine (LOM) is forecast to be 20 years at current rates, but at the request of Altura’s offtake partners, the Company has approved the commencement of an initial Stage 2 expansion study of the project. The Stage 2 scoping study will assist the Company in determining the optimal mine output with the aim of increasing production to 450,000 tonnes annually in order to be aligned with offtake partners’ growth plans.
Concentrate will be exported by ship from Port Hedland to Altura’s lithium aliance partners in China, for further processing into a wide range of lithium chemicals, including lithium carbonate (standard and battery grade), lithium hydroxide, lithium metal, and lithium chloride.
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