Tag Archives: Nord Gold

Nordgold taps Swift Geospatial for tailings and community monitoring at Lefa

Nord Gold has implemented a new state-of-the-art monitoring system at its Lefa mine in Guinea that, it says, will help it keep track of the condition of the operation’s tailings storage facilities to proactively identify potential risks.

The move, in line with the company’s commitment to environmental stewardship, has been facilitated by Swift Geospatial Solutions, a service provider experienced in change detection algorithms that developed the solution.

Lefa’s new monitoring system uses satellite imagery processing algorithms to both analyse the condition of the mine’s tailings storage facilities, as well as monitor community welfare by tracking community dynamics, including house building, it said.

Additionally, the technology can help to monitor artisanal mining activities around Lefa’s current mining permit, allowing local management to better assess and prevent potential safety and security hazards

The company explained: “The Lefa mine’s licence area currently spans more than 1,100 sq.km. The latest satellite technology enables cost-effective monitoring of this expanse with regular updates and is backed by a robust AI package.

“As part of the new system, Planet and SkySAT satellite platforms will be used to perform different tasks, both integrated within the Swift Geospatial Solutions online platform. All outputs are delivered through a custom-built web-application and dashboard environment.”

Evgeny Tulubensky, Nordgold’s Chief Legal Officer and Director of ESG at Nordgold, added: “We are very pleased to test this innovative tool, enabled by satellites, at our Lefa mine. It will help us to receive timely and relevant information about the condition of Lefa’s critical environmental infrastructure and the mine’s immediate surroundings.

“Using this rich data, our aim is to continue reducing our impact on the natural environment and ensuring the sustainable development of local communities. Depending on the outcomes of this pilot, we will assess its viability for other Nordgold operations.”

Nord Gold begins IT system transition to Deswik platform

Nord Gold says it has started re-platforming its mine planning IT systems to Deswik, the Australia-based mining-focused global technology company.

The move follows a successful three-month test period and will see the company integrating its operating environment from the numerous software applications currently in use, Nordgold said.

“Deswik provides specialist solutions spanning software, consulting, and training,” the gold miner said. “To date, Nordgold has implemented strategic mine planning, pit design, load and haul simulation, survey modules, and is also considering using Deswik’s drill hole optimiser module.”

Nordgold expects to roll out the new software platform in a three-year staged approach. Throughout the test period, the Deswik software has been adopted by the company’s head office, the Gross and Tabornoe open-pit mines in eastern Siberia, the Suzdal underground mine in Kazakhstan, and the Lefa mine in Guinea. Migration to the Deswik platform is expected to be completed at the Bissa and Bouly mines in Burkina Faso in 2021, with all remaining operations following shortly thereafter.

Louw Smith, Nordgold’s Chief Operating Officer, said: “At Nordgold we pride ourselves on knowledge sharing and collaboration across the business, despite the differences between our individual operations. The Deswik platform is a perfect fit as it caters for both underground and open-pit mines, which was crucial for our diversified business.

“We have been particularly encouraged by the software’s ability to circumvent our legacy systems’ constraints, while still supporting older data formats for backwards compatibility.

“As the implementation phase has proven, Deswik’s software allows for optimisation of resources to generate guidance reserve shapes, pit design, scheduling of designs, and optimising schedules. Moreover, schedules can be used to generate equipment simulation to investigate the effectiveness of mining fleet and assist in optimising both operating and capital expense allocation.”

Nord Gold moves into 1 Moz/y club with Gross mine opening in Russia

Nord Gold has formally launched its Gross gold mine in Yakutia, Russia, with the operation set to take the company beyond the 1 Moz/y production mark when fully ramped up.

The mine opening ceremony was launched during the Eastern Economic Forum, with company executives joined by Dmitry Kobylkin, the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation, and a number of other regional and national politicians.

Gross, which cost $250 million to construct, is expected to produce 200,000 oz/y of gold over a period of 17 years. Its JORC 2012 resources come in at 9.74 Moz, with reserves of 4.4 Moz.

Nikolai Zelenski, Nordgold CEO, said: “Gross is a significant new asset for Nordgold and turns us into a 1 Moz/y producer for the first time in our history. I believe we have firmly cemented Nordgold as a truly world-leading developer of new gold mine assets.

“This gives us even greater confidence as we look to develop our Montagne d’Or asset in French Guiana which is expected to be a major catalyst for much needed economic growth in the country.”

Gross is adjacent to the company’s Neryungri mine, which produced 67,400 oz of gold last year. It is a single open pit heap leach operation.

All Gross structures meet the technical and climatic requirements specific to the region. They are
earthquake-proof, as well as being designed to operate in Yakutia’s severe climate conditions, with
temperatures that can fall as low as -60ºC.

The mine’s heap leach pads are also designed to be resistant to seismic activity and frost. The geomembranes used are high quality and environmentally protective, meeting the highest international
standards, according to Nordgold.

A coal-fired 16 MWt power plant will ensure continuing operations of the mine even during winter.

The construction of Gross will be Nordgold’s third greenfield project developed from exploration to production and follows the successful launch of the Bissa mine (Burkina Faso) in January 2013 and the Bouly mine (Burkina Faso) in September 2016.