Energy Resources Australia has seen an increase in mining and processing in its second quarter results.
Releasing the report today, the Northern Territory based uranium miner has seen a jump in the levels mined and milled compared to earlier in the year.
It saw a 40% rise in total materials mined over the first quarter, which was due to overcoming a number of difficulties ERA faced earlier in the year such as “instability in the south wall and water in the pit as well as unseasonal late rain,” ERA chief executive Rob Atkinson told Australian Mining.
The company managed to get the “mine sequence back into play, and we now have a larger area to drill and blast as well as a larger area for trucks,” he said.
The miner also saw a strong increase in actual ores milled, 12% above the first half of 2010 and 16% above the same period in 2009.
“We spent a lot of time focusing on process control and metallurgical controls, so the plant performance has been exceptional despite the low grades,” Atkinson said.
It expects to start mining higher grades in the second half of the year as it now has access to lower levels of the pit.
ERA is in very good shape to start ramping up the tonnes, he added.
However, it has reaffirmed its revised guidance of between 4300 to 4700 tonnes, whereas it had previously forecast similar levels to 2009, of approximately 5240 tonnes.
The miner is aiming to have its heap leach facility constructed by 2013.