Portfolio

Bel Air

Alufer discovered the Bel Air deposit through maiden drilling in 2011 and went on to take it all the way through the development pipeline; from feasibility and financing, through construction and into production.

  • The Project is fully licenced and formally documented: Mining Convention, ‘Project of National Interest’, DFS, ESIA (in line with IFC and Equator Principles)
  • The Mining Convention was signed with the Government of Guinea on the 1st February 2016 (to view press release please click here) and subsequently ratified by Parliament in June with the Presidential Decree received in July 2016. Agreeing the Convention was a significant step forward, setting out the operational regime and fiscal/tax incentives for the development of the Project
  • An extensive DFS was completed which validated logistics, construction and mining plans, as well as the economic model
  • Comprehensive Social and Environmental Impact Assessment Studies are ongoing to strive to ensure full IFC and Performance Standard compliance.
  • The project has low capital requirement and operating costs due to proximity to coast and DSO production
  • High quality product with very low reactive silica
  • Initial steady state production of 5.5Mtpa, trucking DSO ore to coast for loading via transshipping barges to Capesize vessels
  • Construction commenced in January 2017 and first Ore on Ship (FOOS) was achieved on time, within budget and with no lost time injuries in August 2018
  • Ramp up has progressed well and the project reached commercial production within 6 months of FOOS, on target to reach steady state as planned
  • Engineering studies are underway to evaluate expansion to a 10mtpa operation

Construction commenced in January 2017 and production commenced in Q3 2018. Stockpiling began at the end of June 2018, with First Ore on Ship achieved in August. Ramp up progressed steadily and commercial production was reached within the first six months, well on track to produce the steady state run rate of 5.5mpta in 2019. Engineering studies are underway to evaluate expansion to a 10mtpa operation.

SIMPLE LOGISTICS SET-UP:  SHORT HAUL – CAUSEWAY CONVEYORS – BARGING – TRANSHIPMENT

Direct Shipping Ore will be mined from a total of six pits. A minimum of two areas are in operation at the same time as this increases production flexibility as well as providing adequate ore blending capability.

Surface mining is being used as the mining method as this is a low opex option with simple handling and high efficiency

  • Optimised mining control
  • Significantly reduces strip ratio, waste handling and haulage costs
  • Lower fuel consumption
  • No requirement for drilling, explosives or secondary crushing required – safer mining operation
  • Improved in pit ground conditions
  • Reduced bulking factor for improved haulage facilities
  • Less dust and noise
  • Enables ongoing rehabilitation during LOM

Materials handling ensures control of dedicated logistics and facilities

  • Simple, efficient infrastructure
  • Material is transported via truck from the pits to the ROM tip at the export facility on coast
  • Ore is stockpiled and handled via conveyor over a rubble causeway and loaded onto barges
  • This serves to de-link the mining process (continuous) and barge loading (batch process)

Onshore infrastructure includes:

  • A self-contained camp and operations centre
  • Water wellfields 
  • Power obtained by diesel generators
  • Dedicated communications and internet

Transhipment is the optimal method for bulk export from Bel Air

  • Transshipment involves the loading of bauxite into barges at a barge berth at the end of a causeway
    • The causeway is a simple geotechnical structure placed on bedrock (1.4km long, -3.4m CD) which provides access from the shore to appropriate water depth for a barge load-out berth
  • Self propelled barges then transport the ore to an Ocean Going Vessel at the Transshipment Zone, approx. 32km offshore
  • A Transhipment vessel then transfers the bauxite from the barges to the OGV
  • This provides an optimum balance between low capex, simplicity of operation and functionality
  • All samples collected from the exploration phase were submitted for XRF and low temperature (150°C) bomb digest analysis; this has enabled Alufer to produce an extensive chemical database and has resulted in a thorough understanding of the available alumina and reactive silica distribution throughout the project
  • 99 representative core samples were selected from all bauxite facies for detailed bauxite characterisation
  • Analysis included density, moisture, organic carbon, XRF, bomb digest, XRD, minor oxides and trace element analysis
  • The DSO unwashed Bel Air bauxite should be easily processed as full or partial feedstock in low and high temperature refineries or for sweetening processes
PROJECT SUMMARY

Alufer discovered the Bel Air deposit through maiden drilling in 2011 and went on to take it all the way through the development pipeline; from feasibility and financing, through construction and into production.

  • The Project is fully licenced and formally documented: Mining Convention, ‘Project of National Interest’, DFS, ESIA (in line with IFC and Equator Principles)
  • The Mining Convention was signed with the Government of Guinea on the 1st February 2016 (to view press release please click here) and subsequently ratified by Parliament in June with the Presidential Decree received in July 2016. Agreeing the Convention was a significant step forward, setting out the operational regime and fiscal/tax incentives for the development of the Project
  • An extensive DFS was completed which validated logistics, construction and mining plans, as well as the economic model
  • Comprehensive Social and Environmental Impact Assessment Studies are ongoing to strive to ensure full IFC and Performance Standard compliance.
  • The project has low capital requirement and operating costs due to proximity to coast and DSO production
  • High quality product with very low reactive silica
  • Initial steady state production of 5.5Mtpa, trucking DSO ore to coast for loading via transshipping barges to Capesize vessels
  • Construction commenced in January 2017 and first Ore on Ship (FOOS) was achieved on time, within budget and with no lost time injuries in August 2018
  • Ramp up has progressed well and the project reached commercial production within 6 months of FOOS, on target to reach steady state as planned
  • Engineering studies are underway to evaluate expansion to a 10mtpa operation
OPERATIONAL OVERVIEW

Construction commenced in January 2017 and production commenced in Q3 2018. Stockpiling began at the end of June 2018, with First Ore on Ship achieved in August. Ramp up progressed steadily and commercial production was reached within the first six months, well on track to produce the steady state run rate of 5.5mpta in 2019. Engineering studies are underway to evaluate expansion to a 10mtpa operation.

SIMPLE LOGISTICS SET-UP:  SHORT HAUL – CAUSEWAY CONVEYORS – BARGING – TRANSHIPMENT

Direct Shipping Ore will be mined from a total of six pits. A minimum of two areas are in operation at the same time as this increases production flexibility as well as providing adequate ore blending capability.

Surface mining is being used as the mining method as this is a low opex option with simple handling and high efficiency

  • Optimised mining control
  • Significantly reduces strip ratio, waste handling and haulage costs
  • Lower fuel consumption
  • No requirement for drilling, explosives or secondary crushing required – safer mining operation
  • Improved in pit ground conditions
  • Reduced bulking factor for improved haulage facilities
  • Less dust and noise
  • Enables ongoing rehabilitation during LOM

Materials handling ensures control of dedicated logistics and facilities

  • Simple, efficient infrastructure
  • Material is transported via truck from the pits to the ROM tip at the export facility on coast
  • Ore is stockpiled and handled via conveyor over a rubble causeway and loaded onto barges
  • This serves to de-link the mining process (continuous) and barge loading (batch process)

Onshore infrastructure includes:

  • A self-contained camp and operations centre
  • Water wellfields 
  • Power obtained by diesel generators
  • Dedicated communications and internet

Transhipment is the optimal method for bulk export from Bel Air

  • Transshipment involves the loading of bauxite into barges at a barge berth at the end of a causeway
    • The causeway is a simple geotechnical structure placed on bedrock (1.4km long, -3.4m CD) which provides access from the shore to appropriate water depth for a barge load-out berth
  • Self propelled barges then transport the ore to an Ocean Going Vessel at the Transshipment Zone, approx. 32km offshore
  • A Transhipment vessel then transfers the bauxite from the barges to the OGV
  • This provides an optimum balance between low capex, simplicity of operation and functionality
BAUXITE CHARACTERISATION
  • All samples collected from the exploration phase were submitted for XRF and low temperature (150°C) bomb digest analysis; this has enabled Alufer to produce an extensive chemical database and has resulted in a thorough understanding of the available alumina and reactive silica distribution throughout the project
  • 99 representative core samples were selected from all bauxite facies for detailed bauxite characterisation
  • Analysis included density, moisture, organic carbon, XRF, bomb digest, XRD, minor oxides and trace element analysis
  • The DSO unwashed Bel Air bauxite should be easily processed as full or partial feedstock in low and high temperature refineries or for sweetening processes