Pilbara Minerals has officially opened its Pilgangoora lithium-tantalum project in Western Australia, four years after the first drill hole.
“This is a very proud day for Pilbara Minerals, and I would like to pay tribute to everyone who has helped us through our journey from explorer to producer,” Pilbara managing director and CEO Ken Brinsden said in a statement.
“Every milestone achieved from exploration through to production and first shipment since we completed our first drill hole back in November 2014 is a testament to our great people and project partners.”
The project consists of a 2 metric tonne per annum (Mtpa) mining and processing operation, with a life-of-mine production of 330,000 tonnes per annum (tpa) 6 percent spodumene concentrate and 300,000 pounds per annum (lbspa) tantalite concentrate.
Pilbara just recently approved a stage 2 expansion for the project, which will boost capacity from 2 Mtpa to 5 Mtpa with the addition of a 3 Mtpa processing circuit, and will push spodumene concentrate production to over 800,000 tpa.
Pilbara has already secured 100 percent of stage 2’s offtake through these agreements, which the company says has “underpinned” the expansion. It is expected that stage 2 will be commissioned during 2019’s December quarter.
Pilgangoora’s construction phase employed over 800 people, and its current operational workforce now has 200 people on board.
Pilbara Minerals’ shares were up 0.60 percent at the end of trading on the ASX on Friday, November 16, closing at AU$0.83 per stock.
Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Resource for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Olivia Da Silva, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.