Ramelius Resources has approved the development of the Penny gold project in Western Australia following a positive feasibility study.
Mining is forecast to commence at the Penny project during the June 2021 quarter, which is slightly ahead of the original schedule contemplated in the prefeasibility study, due to a reduction in underground operating costs from $90.3 million to $86.6 million.
The feasibility study showed an increased metallurgical recovery to 95 per cent, up from the 92 per cent estimated in the prefeasibility study.
Initial mining will begin in the existing Penny West pit, which is safely accessible and the cutback design allows recovery of 1200 tonnes at 15.5 grams per tonne of inferred ore.
The Penny North underground mine will then be accessed from the Penny West pit and will eventually be mined to a depth of maximum 180 metres relative level (mRL), or 315 metres below the surface.
Gold mined from the Penny mine will be processed at the nearby Mt Magnet processing plant, also owned by Ramelius.
Ramelius has also completed an updated mineral resource for the Edna May gold mine, also in Western Australia, of 31 million tonnes at 1.1 gram per tonne for 1 million ounces of gold, representing a 22 per cent increase on the previous resource.
The company has continued studies at Edna May of underground bulk mining versus high grade only mining, which has showed any decision to change from the current high grade lode mining is best considered alongside the potential stage three open pit study.
The Edna May studies are expected to be completed by the end of the 2020 calendar year.