Australian Vanadium’s pre-feasibility study (PFS) shows the Gabanintha project to be a robust base case, with a planned production rate of around 10,100 tonnes of vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) per year.
The project boasts an initial mine life of 17 years, with potential to extend operations by an additional 8km along strike.
The PFS estimated average operating expenses of around $US4.13 ($5.69) per pound of V2O5 equivalent. This is considered by Australian Vanadium as competitive with the world’s lowest quartile producers.
Company managing director Vincent Algar said, “Our intention with the ongoing feasibility study work is to understand and design a long-life, low-cost vanadium pentoxide and cobalt concentrate production facility.
“It is essential that all technical aspects are understood, and the capital and operating costs minimised, given the cyclical nature of the vanadium markets.”
The project’s capital costs are estimated to be around $US360 million ($496 million).
The Gabanintha operation is comprised of a proposed open pit mine; crushing, milling and beneficiation plant (CMB); and refining plant for final conversation and sale of V2O5. This will be used toward development of energy storage markets and production of steel and specialty alloys.
The PFS is on track for completion in December, which will allow Australian Vanadium to proceed into piloting and definitive feasibility study (DFS).
Earlier this month, Australian Vanadium was granted a licence for a new tenement south of the Gabanintha vanadium resource near the mining town of Meekatharra in Western Australia.