DRA gets the Perkoa job

AIM Resources has appointed DRA Mineral Projects as managing contractor for the processing plant and surface infrastructure at its Perkoa zinc project, located in the Sanguie Province of Burkina Faso, 120 km west of the capital Ouagadougou. DRA Mineral Projects is an engineering company based in Johannesburg, which specialises in project management and process plant design. DRA Mineral Projects has successfully designed and commissioned many platinum and similar concentrators in Africa and has executed process plant projects in four other continents. The Perkoa Zinc process plant falls well within the company’s range of expertise and skills.

Teams from AIM Resources and DRA Mineral Projects will work together to optimize Perkoa’s processing plant design. order long lead time equipment as appropriate and commission the plant to achieve the planned first delivery of zinc concentrate in early 2008. DRA’s scope of work will include engineering, design, procurement and construction management of the process plant and related infrastructure; managing the establishment of the surface workshops, power plant, offices and township; and managing specialist consultants to construct the residue disposal facilities for the mine.

AIM Resources’ Managing Director, Mr Marc Flory, commented: “DRA Mineral Projects is experienced in the building and operating processing plants in Africa. The depth of the workforce will provide a very valuable asset to Perkoa Zinc,

especially in light of current global demand to develop new mines. This pool of skills and labour are well suited to constructing Perkoa Zinc’s processing facilities at a greenfields site in Africa. The flowsheet for Perkoa’s processing plant comprises crushing, dense media separation (DMS) and flotation to produce a clean concentrate grading 53% zinc.”

DRA Mineral Projects has grown to international status with 80 qualified engineers in a staff of some 300 with skills in mechanical, civil and structural engineering design; project and construction management; process and winder engineering; and electrical & instrumentation engineering. DRA Mineral Projects started as an electrical and instrumentation company and has maintained a high profile in these disciplines.

The Perkoa zinc project is 35km by road from the country’s third largest town, Koudougou, which is linked to neighbouring states of Cote D’Ivoire, Ghana and Togo by tarred roads and by rail to Abidjan, capital of Cote D’Ivoire. Snowden Mining Consultants completed a Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS) on the project in December 2005. Perkoa has a JORC-compliant Ore Reserve of 6.3 Mt at a mine head grade of 14.5% Zn. The BFS incorporates a mine design consisting of a shaft and decline to access the orebody, ramping up to deliver 0.5 Mt/y of ore. A simple processing facility will produce 116,000 t/y of relatively clean concentrate, grading 53% zinc over a 14 year mine life.

Plant infrastructure in the study includes a tailings dam facility incorporating a return/storm water dam for capture and re-use in the processing plant. The main source of process water will be from a dam that has recently been constructed by the Burkina Faso Government, close to the Perkoa project. Power will be provided by on-site diesel generators. The BFS addressed the project’s transportation requirements by recommending two of the alternatives available. The first route uses the rail line situated 30 km from Perkoa and passing through the Cote D’Ivoire to the Port of Abidjan. The second route uses road transport alternatives passing through Ghana to the Port of Tema.