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Trevali’s Rosh Pinah in Namibia is WhyAfrica’s Pick of the Week

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Trevali Mining's Rosh Pinah mine in Namibia. Image credit: Trevali Mining

By Leon Louw founder and editor of WhyAfrica

22 August 2021 – With easy access to the recently upgraded Port of Lüderitz and an expansion project in the pipeline, Canadian based Trevali Mining’s Rosh Pinah zinc-lead mine in the south of Namibia is WhyAfrica’s Pick of the Week.     

The Rosh Pinah underground zinc-lead mine has been in continuous operation since 1969 and currently produces zinc and lead sulphide concentrates containing minor amounts of copper, silver, and gold. The zinc and lead concentrates are transported by road to Lüderitz from where it is shipped to international markets.

With a new 500m quay, two recently acquired 60-tonne Haulers and one 45-tonne Reach Stacker, Lüderitz pro­vides efficient and safe cargo handling faci­lities for importers and exporters to Namibia.

TransNamib, the national rail services operator, has revived the railway to Lüderitz which makes it possible for the historic port to serve some mining companies in the southern regions of Namibia and north-western South Africa. These developments have made life a lot easier for Trevali’s Rosh Pinah mine, located about 292km from Lüderitz.

Trevali embarked on an Expansion Pre-Feasibility Study for Rosh Pinah in August 2020, which entails upgrades to the processing plant and a new portal.

According to Ricus Grimbeek, Presdent and CEO of Trevali, the expansion projects (RP2.0) will modernise and expand the 50-year-old mine, increasing throughput by 86%.

Since providing the results of the Expansion Pre-Feasibility Study in August 2020, the team optimised and de-risked the project, delivering a Feasibility Study that reaffirms robust project economics, while reducing our carbon intensity and water consumption usage on a per tonne milled basis,” says Grimbeek.

“In parallel with advancing the technical aspects of the project, we have had productive discussions with our existing lending syndicate as well as numerous financial institutions on securing project debt financing to minimise equity dilution,” Grimbeek adds.

Processing plant upgrade

The Feasibility Study incorporates a planned upgrade to the comminution circuit to include a new, single-stage Semi-Autogenous Grinding (SAG) mill and pebble crusher.

The expansion also includes primary crushing upgrades and an ore blending area, along with other circuit modifications intended to provide increased flotation, thickening, filtration, and pumping capacity to achieve the target throughput of 1.3 Million tonnes per annum (Mtpa).

The upgrade will also include several flowsheet modifications aimed at improving both the concentrate grade and metal recoveries.

Underground development and infrastructure

A dedicated portal and decline to the WF3 deposit will be constructed to support the increase in mine production levels and to reduce operating costs.

The planned trucking decline will be 3.9km long, excluding level access and stockpiles. The trucking decline will act as an additional fresh air intake within the ventilation network and will enable direct ore haulage from the WF3 zone to a new surface primary crusher station utilising large-scale (60 tonne) trucks. Ore sourced from other areas (EOF, SF3, SOF, and BME) will be transported to the existing underground crushing system using the existing 30 tonne truck fleet and conveyed to surface via the existing conveying system.

Reduction in onsite operating costs

Once the project is commissioned, onsite operating costs are expected to reduce by approximately 26% on a per tonne milled basis. Mining costs per tonne milled are expected to be reduced due to the planned change in the mining method to include paste fill allowing for increased ore recovery and reduced mining dilution.

Mining costs are also expected to benefit from the dedicated underground decline to the WF3 deposit which should allow for more efficient material handling and reduced cycle times.

The processing unit costs are expected to decrease as a result of treating increased tonnages following the upgrade. Fixed on site costs on a per tonne milled basis are also expected to decrease as the mine ramps up from 0.7 Mtpa to the FS target of 1.3 Mtpa as a function of higher annual throughput.

For more visit https://trevali.com/

Leon Louw is the founder and editor of WhyAfrica. He specialises in natural resources and African affairs.        

WhyAfrica provides you with business intelligence that matters. Africa is our business, and we want it to be yours too. To subscribe to WhyAfrica’s free newsletter or digital magazine, and for more news on Africa, visit the website at www.whyafrica.co.za or send a direct message.


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