Scoping study offers insight into the Korbel mine
Nova is now considering integrating higher-grade RPMs into its plan north of 60 Mining News – March 4, 2022
Nova Minerals Ltd. announced on February 28 the completion of an exploratory study that provides a first look at the economics and development parameters of a mine at the Korbel Main deposit on the company’s Estelle gold property in Alaska.
“The Company is pleased to report strong and positive results from the scoping study which focused on Korbel Main solely to determine if the resource defined on the deposit to date can support a potentially viable self-start operation” , said the CEO of Nova Minerals. Christopher Gerteisen.
According to this “snapshot in time” study, a mine at Korbel would produce 1.96 million ounces of gold over an initial 15-year period.
At a gold price of US$1,750/oz, the mine described in the study is expected to generate a pre-tax net present value (5% discount) of US$381 million and an internal rate of return of 20. 4%.
At all-in sustaining costs of $1,120/oz of gold produced over the life of mine, this operation would pay off the estimated US$424 million in pre-production capital costs to develop the mine in three years approximately.
The open pit mining described in this study would mine 195 million metric tons of ore from the main Korbel deposit, at an average grade of 0.41 grams per metric ton, which would be valued at 0.7 g/t gold. with an ore sorter before entering the plant.
“The main drivers of these robust yields are the geometry and nature of the mineralization within these massive IRGS (gold intrusive system) ore bodies, which start at the surface to allow open pit mining with a very low stripping rate. , particularly important in the early years, yet lends itself easily to ore sorting, allowing for a significant improvement in the ore feed to the plant,” said Gerteisen.
Currently, the main Korbel deposit hosts a total of 286 metric tonnes of Australian Joint Ore Reserves Committee compliant indicated resources averaging 0.3 g/t (3 million ounces) gold, plus 583 million metric tonnes of inferred resources averaging 0.3 g/t (5.1 million ounces) gold.
Gerteisen says the scoping study provides a solid foundation to advance pre-feasibility level studies at Estelle, and the company has already identified clear opportunities to improve gold production and the economics of the establishment. a multi-deposit mine on the district-wide property. This includes expanding and upgrading the current resources at Korbel, as well as incorporating the higher grade gold mineralization identified at RPM into the mine plan.
An early-stage deposit approximately 16 miles south of Korbel., RPM North hosts 23.1 million metric tonnes of JORC-compliant inferred resources averaging 2 g/t (1.5 million oz) of ‘gold. This resource, which comes to the surface, includes one hole drilled in 2012 and six completed by Nova last year.
This year’s program at Estelle is expected to include at least 20,000 meters of drilling to upgrade and expand the RPM resource.
Materials handling studies are also underway to research low-cost options for transporting ore from RPM to a central processing facility at Korbel.
“This year, our drilling programs and testwork are aimed at quickly converting the current 6.6 Mozs of inferred resources from both deposits to higher confidence measured and indicated resources, as well as advancing the RPM deposit to high grade to be included in the next PFS stage,” said the CEO of Nova Minerals. “We believe the results of the scoping study are an excellent starting point that demonstrates the technical and economic benefits that come from a large bulk tonnage project in a Tier 1 location. Everything is upside down at leave this place.”