The main objective of the Narrow Vein Mining project is the development, prototyping and optimization of a new technology to facilitate the mining of steeply-dipping narrow veins, including the Romeo & Juliet Deposit and Deer Cove Deposit, located at the Point Rousse Project.
Newfoundland is host to many deposits that are not economic with current technology. To illustrate both the challenge and the opportunity, consider Anaconda’s Romeo & Juliet deposit. This deposit, based on non-NI43-101 resource estimates, using a 1.0 g/t cut-off, contains 60,112 tonnes at 2.05 g/t Au. The estimated geometry of the deposit, based on diamond drill holes and geological interpolation, indicates that the mineralization extends to 100 m below surface, is 1.0 m thick on average and sub-vertically, and has a strike length of 200 m. In addition to Romeo and Juliet deposit, Anaconda has a second narrow vein deposit, known as Deer Cove, which has non-NI43-101 resource estimate, using a 6.0 g/t cut-off, of 12,900 tonnes at 10.45 g/t.
There are approximately 3.4 million ounces of gold resources in various categories that are not being mined in Newfoundland http://gis.geosurv.gov.nl.ca. While there could be many reasons, it is conceivable that some of these deposits could be idle due to the lack of an economic mining method. Using CAD $1,550.00/ounce as a basis for calculations, these resources have an in-situ value of $5 billion.
Anaconda Mining believes in the potential to develop an economic solution to challenging deposits and is working closely with the Faculty of Engineering at Memorial University to develop this revolutionary innovative approach to mining.
NVM Concept – Fragmentation-in-Place (FiP)
This concept is a complete surface mining option with a drilling rig as a main surface piece of equipment used in conjunction with several field proven down hole technologies. The mining process would be divided into two campaigns: drilling the pilot holes and accurately mapping the vein, then enlarging the pilot holes to predetermined sizes to recover the ore. Using an inclined mast drilling rig an inclined pilot hole is to be drilled along the center line of the vein (equidistant between the hanging wall and foot wall) with directional drilling system. Steering the pilot holes live with survey tool will determine the current orientation and to refine 3D model of the vein used to plan the pilot hole enlargement. Once the pilot hole has been drilled, progressively larger hole-openers can be used to drill along the pilot hole’s trajectory up to 2m. Hole-opener diameter should be selected to optimize rate of penetration. A surface collection and separation system then handles the lifted cuttings and discharges to the surface transportation system. A settling pond should be constructed on site to handle excess water as de-watering unit will not be required and there are no harmful agents that are added to the water.
FiP Concept conducts all operations from surface, eliminating the risks associated with underground mining also utilize highly selective mining methods that have a minimal surfaced footprint during mining operations which can be easily reclaimed.
FiP Concept is highly selective with minimal dilution, thus minimizing energy consumption per unit of ore produced and can be adapted to utilize electrical power to reduce hydrocarbon combustion emissions.
FiP Concept can further reduce emissions since it does not use explosives and generate emissions due to blasting and does not require primary crushing, further reducing energy requirements.
FiP Concept is innovative and new mining method, and other the potential for Anaconda Mining to exploit previously uneconomic stranded steeply-dipping narrow vein deposits and has the potential to be commercialized and introduced into the mining marketplace for purchase or lease by other mining companies and contractors.
For more information contact:
Alan Cramm, VP Innovation & Development