Lithium developer Pilbara Minerals is on track to deliver first spodumene concentrate from the processing plant at the Pilgangoora project in Western Australia next month.
Pilbara Minerals’ latest development towards this milestone is the start of ore load commissioning through Pilgangoora’s crushing facilities.
The crusher has been provided under a build-own-operate contract with Crushing Services International, a division of Mineral Resources.
Construction of Pilgangoora’s processing plant, meanwhile, is moving towards completion, with Pilbara Minerals today reporting that subsets of the circuit are being completed daily ahead of commissioning of the main concentrator starting in the coming weeks.
“The company remains on track to deliver first concentrate from the processing plant by the end of June 2018,” Pilbara Minerals said in ASX announcement.
Stage one of Pilgangoora has been forecast to produce up to 350,000t/y of spodumene concentrate once the operation has been ramped up to full capacity. Pilbara Minerals is also working on a definitive feasibility study for a stage two expansion, which it expects to deliver by mid-2018.
In other company developments, Pilbara Minerals has established the Pilgangoora Monster pit and infrastructure as part of its plans for the delivery of Direct Shipping Ore (DSO) to Atlas Iron’s processing facilities in the region.
Atlas will receive a minimum of 1Mt of run-of-mine lithium-tantalum material from Pilgangoora on a mine gate sale basis, which is based on a delivery schedule designed for shipping of 100,000t of DSO a month to offtake customers.
Once processed using Atlas’ infrastructure, the DSO will be shipped to China through Utah Port at Port Hedland.