19/05/2021 - 15:43

Novo lands key PhotonAssay deal for Nullagine gold mine

19/05/2021 - 15:43

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TSX-listed WA gold producer, Novo Resources has moved to speed up the process for receiving its gold assay results. The company has now secured a deal with Intertek Testing Services (Australia) Pty Ltd that will see the latter provide on-site laboratory and sample preparation services and PhotonAssay services. Intertek will manage an on-site laboratory at Novo’s Golden Eagle gold processing plant near Nullagine in the East Pilbara.

Toronto Stock Exchange-listed WA gold producer, Novo Resources has moved to speed up the process for receiving its gold assay results. The Vancouver-based company has now secured a deal with Intertek Testing Services (Australia) Pty Ltd that will see the latter provide laboratory and sample preparation services on site and PhotonAssay services in Perth.

A wholly owned subsidiary of the London-headquartered and London Stock Exchange-listed Intertek Group, Intertek will manage an on-site laboratory at Novo’s Golden Eagle gold processing plant near Nullagine in the East Pilbara.

Under the terms of their initial three-year agreement, Intertek will prepare samples at the on-site lab from Novo’s infill drilling program at its Beatons Creek conglomerate gold mine for photon assaying at Intertek’s new state-of-the-art facility in Perth.

Novo recently commenced commissioning and production at Beatons Creek and Golden Eagle. The new gold mine lies 10 kilometres north-west of the refurbished plant.

Beatons Creek hosts an indicated and inferred mineral resource of 10.9 million tonnes at an average grade of 2.5 grams per tonne for an estimated 903,000 ounces of contained gold.

Intertek has agreed to give Novo priority access to two new Chrysos PhotonAssay units currently being installed in Intertek’s Perth facility and slated to be fully operational by later this month and early July.

Novo says it has committed to a minimum total of 40,000 PhotonAssays per month from the Chrysos units once they are fully operational.

Novo Resources Chairman and President, Dr Quinton Hennigh said: “We can soon begin to alleviate our backlog of grade control assays, but also now have an assurance that we can provide sufficient assay capacity for Beatons Creek and our exploration programs across the Pilbara on an ongoing basis during the life of the Intertek agreement.”

“We were one of the first companies to utilise Chrysos PhotonAssays in 2017 and take great pride in being one of the first to commit to wholesale long-term use of this technique for virtually all our analytic needs.”

Novo has been busy undertaking a grade control and resource upgrade reverse circulation drilling campaign across the Beatons Creek deposit.

The company says drill samples are collected on half-metre intervals, then the sample material is crushed and split. PhotonAssay analyses samples five kilograms at a time, in ten 500-gram charges.

According to Novo, PhotonAssay is an optimal way to analyse ore grades in Beatons Creek’s nuggety gold mineralisation.

Novo recently tabled an impressive preliminary economic assessment, or “PEA” for Beatons Creek showing EBITDA of US$88 million a year or more than A$110 million a year. Projected free cash flow was put at an average US$64 million a year or A$82 million a year before tax.

PEA financial metrics were predicated on annual gold production of 100,000 ounces per annum over an initial six-year life of mine from 9.48 million tonnes of ore milled at an average head grade of 2.16 g/t.

All-in sustaining costs of gold production have been forecast to average US$974 an ounce or about A$1,250 an ounce.

Novo has an option to extend the agreement with Intertek out to six years.

 

Is your ASX-listed company doing something interesting? Contact: matt.birney@businessnews.com.au 

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