Mining Operations

The Mine department will be responsible for all work related to the drilling, blasting, loading and hauling of ore and waste material. Crushing of ore will also be within the scope of work for the Mine department.

Reliable and quality production will require integrated coordination between equipment operators, surveyors, mine planners and mine geology.

Ore and waste will be drilled and blasted using 12” diameter blast holes. The blasts will be designed such that material can be mined out in 15m benches. An on-site explosives plant producing an emulsion product will be used to supply the explosives to the blast hole. The holes will be primed and tied together to a non-electric detonating cord that will be used to detonate the blast. Blasted material will be less than 1500mm diameter. Any oversize will be drilled with a secondary drill and re-blasted. Blast sizes will be maximized where practical to maintain large broken inventories in pit and reduce disruptions to mining operations. Blending requirements to ensure product quality will require multiple mining faces.

Hydraulic front-shovels will be used to load 320 tonne electric drive haul trucks. A support fleet of motor graders, tracked dozers, front-end loaders and excavators will be used to maintain the pit and waste dumps.

Waste material will be sent to a dump location northwest of the pit. The mine will identify and segregate all potentially acid generating waste rock (PAG rock). PAG rock will be encapsulated within the clean rock dump such that it is within the permafrost layer and will not be subject to oxidation, and thus potential acid generation.

Ore will be delivered to the primary gyratory crusher, which will produce material with a nominal size of less than 164mm. This product will be then sent to two cone crushers for secondary crushing and will produce crushed material with a nominal size of less than 44mm. This material will be conveyed to the Mary River stockpile.

At its ultimate depth the pit will have highwalls that are more than 500m above the pit bottom and waste dumps of equivalent heights.