Engineering & Mining Journal

NOV 2018

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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NEWS-LEADING DEVELOPMENTS 4 E&MJ • NOVEMBER 2018 www.e-mj.com Rio Tinto, Hancock Prospecting Open New Mine at Hope Downs Rio Tinto and Hancock Prospecting opened a new mine at Hope Downs in the Pilbara, Western Australia. The joint ven- ture partners also approved an investment in greater automation, driving productivi- ty and improving safety. Development of the Baby Hope deposit will help sustain existing capacity at the Hope Downs No. 1 operation, supporting ongoing jobs at Hope Downs, the companies said. By 2020, a total of 28 existing haul trucks at the Hope Downs No. 1 mine will be retrofitted with Autonomous Haulage System (AHS) technology. Three production drills at the Hope Downs No. 4 mine will also be retrofitted with Autonomous Drilling System (ADS) technology. This deployment will deliver safety benefits to both haulage and drilling operations as well as productiv- ity gains to the business through a higher utilization rate of the existing fleet. "This investment will ensure sustain- able production levels at the Hope Downs No. 1 operation and is a clear demonstra- tion of our continuing commitment to the people of Western Australia and the joint venture partnership," Rio Tinto Iron Ore Chief Executive Chris Salisbury said. "To- gether, we have played an instrumental role in developing the Pilbara and remain com- mitted to pioneering new ways to innovate and improve our business for the future." Salisbury said the company has rede- ployed or upskilled employees impacted by automation and expects the trend to continue with the extension of this tech- nology at Hope Downs. At the mine opening, Hancock Pros- pecting Group Executive Chairwoman Gina Rinehart said, "Thank you very much again to Rio for investing in Baby Hope, and other Hope Downs mines too, as well as all of your earlier investments in the Pilbara and Australia. A truly giant contribution, offering employment and more indirect employment and opportu- nities to many Australians over decades. She added, "Hope Downs is very spe- cial to Hancock. It was named after a very special and beautiful lady, my mother Hope, a truly wonderful West Australian. My father, Lang Hancock, whose flights of discovery entailed him risking his life many times, was responsible for finding a significant number of major iron ore deposits in the Pilbara, indeed about 10 of which now form major mines for Rio Tinto, plus Hope Downs." Hancock Prospecting and Rio Tinto are equal partners in the Hope Downs Joint Venture. Rio Tinto bought in to Hope Downs in 2005 after Hancock completed a bankable feasibility study and explora- tion of other Hope Downs areas. Rio Tinto and Hancock's shared histo- ry extends back to the early 60s when Sir Val Duncan was chairman of Rio Tinto. Baby Hope is located about 4 kilome- ters southwest of the Hope Downs No. 1 South Deposit and immediately north of the Lang Hancock rail line. All necessary government and environmental approvals have been secured. Hope Downs Nos. 1 and 4 produced 46.9 million metric tons (mt) of iron ore in 2017. Dugald River Gathers Pace, Las Bambas Back on Track MMG Ltd. announced its third-quar- ter 2018 production result producing 121,926 metric tons (mt) of copper and 57,595 mt of zinc in the three months to September 30. "The Dugald River ramp up continues to track ahead of schedule, with mining and milling rates at 100% and 112% of nameplate capacity during the third quar- ter," CEO Geoffrey Gao said. MMG's 2018 production guidance for Dugald River has also been upgrad- ed to 140,000 mt to 150,000 mt of zinc in concentrate (from 120,000 mt to 140,000 mt previously). Las Bambas mining and production rates are recovering following the localized wall slippage that impacted third-quarter production. As previously disclosed, 2018 production is now expected to be within the range of 375,000 mt to 395,000 mt of copper in concentrate with C1 costs be- tween US$1.10-1.20/lb. "Despite the geotechnical challenges during the quarter, mill throughput in- creased 7% compared to first half 2018 rates with throughput now consistently running above design capacity." "Las Bambas is expected to produce in excess of 2 million mt of copper in con- centrate over its first five years of opera- tion and we continue to advance a series of debottlenecking, plant upgrade and ex- ploration projects to extend this produc- tion profile into the future," Gao said. "Rosebery and Kinsevere both deliv- ered a record quarter for mill throughput Rio Tinto Iron Ore Chief Executive Chris Salisbury, Hancock Prospecting Group Executive Chairwoman Gina Rinehart and Greater Hope Downs General Manager Gaby Poirier open the Baby Hope deposit at Hope Downs.

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