Tag Archives: Blackwater

Artemis Gold locks in Blackwater EPC processing plant price with Ausenco

After a competitive bidding process, Artemis Gold has executed a binding memorandum of understanding with Ausenco Engineering Canada Inc providing for a guaranteed maximum price (GMP) for a fixed-price engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract to construct a 5.5 Mt/y processing facility and associated infrastructure at the Blackwater gold project in British Columbia, Canada.

The selection of Ausenco as the successful bidder was based on a proposal to engineer and construct the facilities for a GMP of $236 million ($188 million), subject to any technical or commercial changes requested by Artemis.

The MoU outlines the terms under which Ausenco will undertake further detailed engineering, which will form the basis of a final fixed EPC price that will not exceed the GMP. This Ausenco GMP is consistent with capital estimates in the company’s 2020 prefeasibility study on Blackwater.

A fixed price EPC contract on the processing facility and associated infrastructure represents by far the largest single component of the capital cost of Blackwater at approximately 40% of the PFS estimate of C$592 million ($470 million), Artemis says.

Ausenco has already undertaken a significant amount of detailed engineering work on the plant and will be working towards a final fixed-price EPC contract for the facilities scheduled for completion in the September quarter.

Artemis is also conducting a competitive bidding process for a GMP proposal in connection with a fixed price EPC contract for the construction of the electricity transmission line and associated offsite infrastructure, with an expected GMP award in the June quarter, it said.

Steven Dean, Chairman and CEO, said: “The execution of this MoU represents a significant investment of time and effort from management and multiple GMP bidders over the past several months. The Ausenco GMP bid serves as further validation of the initial capital costs estimated in the 2020 PFS with respect to the process plant and associated facilities, further de-risking the development of the project.

“Following a rigorous adjudication process of a number of competitive proposals, we are very pleased to be working with a world-class engineering firm such as Ausenco. Ausenco was also involved in the successful development at Atlantic Gold and the award of the GMP should give investors and potential project debt lenders greater confidence in the proposed schedule and initial capital cost to develop Blackwater on time and on budget.”

The 2020 prefeasibility study on Blackwater envisaged a three-stage development starting at 5.5 Mt/y from years 1-5, shifting to 12 Mt/y in years 6-10 and rising to 20 Mt/y in years 11-23. This would see gold production go from 248,000 oz/y to 420,000 oz/y, to 316,000 oz/y, respectively.

BMA Blackwater coal mine starts up new gen Cat D11 dozer

The first Caterpillar new generation D11 dozer in the world has started work at BHP Mitsubishi Alliance’s (BMA) Blackwater coal mine in Queensland, Australia, according to mining, resources, transport and logistics group National Group.

National Group secured the first of these dozers earlier this month from Cat dealer Hastings Deering as part of an order that would see six of these machines hauled by its National Heavy Haulage subsidiary, the company said.

While the specifics of this new dozer are not yet known, Cat did plan to launch an update to its D11 earlier this year. This would have seen the machine receive new load-sensing hydraulics and new drivetrain components among other additions.

BMA’s Blackwater coal mine, in Queensland’s Bowen Basin, produced close to 2.1 Mt of coal in the most recent September quarter, according to BHP.

In a Hastings Deering release in mid-December, National Group’s Managing Director, Mark Ackroyd, said: “The D11 is the industry’s best large dozer so it was a logical choice for us to bring in six new dozers to add to our expansive fleet.”

Along with load sensing hydraulics reducing fuel burn, the new D11 will extend out component life from fuel burn to overhaul, according to the company. Caterpillar has developed this machine to ensure faster cycle times to produce more dirt at a lower cost per tonne, National Group added.

Ackroyd said the contribution the dozers will add to production and efficiency will boost overall performance on site. “We expect to lower maintenance and repair costs by up to 5% thanks to a new case and frame design, improved bearings, redesigned pin joints, and a 30% larger oil pan.”

Jason Garea, Mining Account Manager at Hastings Deering, said: “There is a single frame now used between both the D11 standard dozer and the carry dozer applications. It’s a beefed-up frame that now does both.”

National Group has lined up all six dozers to be fitted with the new Reclamation blade, or XU Blade, which takes the dozer from a 34 cu.meter blade, to a 42.2 cu.m, according to Garea. “The best thing here is that it still handles like a U-Blade and can go into the same applications. They are far, far more productive which reduces the cost per tonne.”

The second D11 dozer is expected to be commissioned onsite at Blackwater in January.

SRG secures BMA Blackwater coal drilling contract from Downer

Australia-listed SRG Global has has been awarded a circa-A$20 million ($14.3 million) contract for drilling works with services company Downer at the BHP Mitsubishi Alliance-owned Blackwater coal mine in central Queensland.

This award further reinforces SRG Global’s mining business as a leading provider of drilling services, according to the company. Works under the contract are expected to use an existing drilling fleet, with the work starting shortly.

Back in February, Downer announced it had been awarded a three-year contract, valued at approximately A$600 million, to provide mining and related services at Blackwater.

Meanwhile, SRG and Global Construction Services recently merged in an effort to become a global specialist engineering, construction and maintenance group.

MACA wins contract mining job at Blackwater coal project in Queensland

MACA is about to start work on Wealth Mining’s Bluff coal project in the Bowen Basin of Queensland after being chosen as the main contract miner.

The contractor will carry out all open-pit mining activities including planning, procurement, management and supervision, load and haul, drill and blast, and water management at the project, with the agreement expected to generate some A$700 million ($507 million) in revenue over the 10-year mine life.

MACA said the project will broaden its commodity exposure and geographical footprint, while allowing it to use larger fleet classes including 350 t excavators and 220 t and 180 t dump trucks. The fleet is expected to be a mix of acquired and hired equipment with MACA estimating capital expenditure of A$45 million.

Bluff, which was acquired by current owner Wealth Mining via its takeover of Carabella Resources in February 2014, will produce around 12 Mt/y of pulverised coal injection product. Coal will be processed with existing infrastructure at the Cook colliery (pictured), which was recently acquired and recommissioned by the Bounty Mining Group and has readily available port and rail access.

The project has a granted mining lease in place together with environmental authority approval.

Contract works will start in the December quarter with first coal expected to be produced in the March quarter of 2019.

“The project will be an ‘Alliance’ style contract aimed at delivering the lowest possible cost to our client,” MACA said. Employee numbers are expected to total 140 people.

MACA will finance the drop cut to first coal and other minor project works via a secured working capital facility of A$25 million. The contract takes the company’s work in hand position to A$1.982 billion and leaves it on track to hit revenue guidance of A$620 million for the full financial year to end-June 2019.