Precious metals developer Sabina Gold and Silver has announced optimisation to the plan for its Goose mine, at the Back River district in Nunavut. The updated feasibility study of February 2021 contemplated a mill producing 3 000 t/d for the first two years, increasing to 4 000 t/d in year two with a sustaining capital cost for the expansion of about C$17-million.
As part of the updated study, an initial 4 000 t/d mill was considered. However, at the time, the settled tailings density was based on the previous pre-leach thickener test work. This work resulted in a lower Echo openpit tailings capacity and a decision to delay the mill expansion timeline.
Sabina says that since the updated feasibility study, completion of detailed geotechnical test work on the tailings samples and the inclusion of a high-capacity tailings thickener, the tailings storage capacity of the Echo openpit has increased sufficiently to enable the decision to construct the mill at a 4 000 t/d capacity at the outset.
This, in addition to optimised equipment selection and detailed engineering, has reduced the cost of the expansion to C$10-million.
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