Apart from the Leinster’s current tailings, those at Kambalda are estimated to contain 132,452 tons of nickel. Mining operations have ceased at Kambalda and its tailings resource is estimated at 32.6 million tons grading 0.41% nickel in situ.
Preliminary planning is that the Kambalda facility will process an annual 3.5 million tons of tailings to produce some 13,000 tons of nickel in concentrates for sale to BHP Billiton. Initial estimates are that the plant could be erected at a cost of US$160 million in 2008 money.
Mount Keith’s dump contains an estimated 102 million tons of tailings grading 0.21% nickel in situ and containing 218,306 tons of nickel. A further 285 million tons grading 0.17% nickel are expected to be deposited over the mine’s remaining operating life. At this stage there are no firm plans to exploit the Mount Keith resource. However, very preliminary estimates are that a plant could be up and running by 2012 at a cost in today’s money of US$ 250 million processing an annual 11.5 million tons of tailings and producing 22,000 tons of nickel in concentrates.
Braemore’s distinctive competitive advantage lies in the unique technology that it has proprietary access to, both in the PGMs and nickel markets.