ASX-listed junior explorer Surefire Resources has been buoyed by a recently completed scoping study on its Perenjori iron ore project in WA’s south-west Murchison district that points to a potentially economically viable mining and beneficiation operation producing high-grade magnetite concentrate. The company says the study shows a “clear pathway” to meeting its 30 per cent internal rate of return hurdle for a project development.
Surefire Resources has been buoyed by a recently completed scoping study on its Perenjori iron ore project in WA that points to a potentially economically viable mining and beneficiation operation producing a premium high-grade magnetite concentrate and requiring a low capital outlay. The Perth-based company says the study outcomes show a “clear pathway” to meeting its 30 per cent internal rate of return hurdle for a project development.
It now intends putting more flesh on the bones of its Perenjori plan.
The initial study undertaken by MinRizon Projects used a previous inferred mineral resource estimate for the Perenjori deposit calculated by international mining consulting group CSA Global. CSA worked with a pre-2012 JORC code and conservative iron ore pricing.
Perenjori’s resource stands at 191.7 million tonnes at an average grade of 36.6 per cent iron.
Surefire’s scoping study examined open-pit magnetite ore mined at Perenjori being beneficiated using conventional crushing, two-pass grinding and magnetic separation.
The company says metallurgical testwork indicated Perenjori magnetite ore could be upgraded to a final concentrate product grading an eye-catching 67.5 per cent iron as a high-grade feed material for the hungry Asian steel industry.
An 85 per cent iron yield could be realised from a significant portion of the orebody and weight recovery was expected to come in at 44 per cent, according to the ASX-listed junior explorer.
Surefire says additional testwork will be conducted during a proposed pre-feasibility study phase to verify initial results as well as pit optimisation studies.
Perenjori, in WA’s south-west Murchison district, benefits from an abundance of supporting infrastructure that the company hopes will help keep a lid on capital and operating costs.
The project area sits within about 15km of both the Morawa-Perenjori trunk rail line and the Karara rail spur and is about 220km by rail from Geraldton port.
The high-voltage Three Springs-Golden Grove power transmission line lies within 8km of the Perenjori deposit.
Surefire Resources Managing Director Vladimir Nikolaenko said: “Surefire is delighted with the outcome of the scoping study. Technical assessment has already indicated the ore can produce a high-grade magnetic concentrate that is attractive to the market.”
“This first-pass preliminary economic assessment has now provided the board with confidence that the Perenjori iron project is commercially attractive. Surefire can now confidently plan to move the project forward.”
Surefire says it plans to carry out further resource definition drilling with a view to converting as much of the Perenjori resource estimate to an indicated category and the 2012 JORC standard ahead of feasibility studies.
The company suggests there is significant potential to expand the resource base given what it says are identified extensions to the banded iron formation-associated magnetite ore.
Although a timeframe for a potential project development has not been set at this stage, Surefire will be tempted to accelerate the PFS process while the iron ore price continues to defy gravity above US$210 per tonne.
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