QUEBEC – Ottawa-based Focus Graphite has released the preliminary economic assessment for its Lac Knife project near Fermont. The PEA was prepared by Roscoe Postle Associates and Soutex Inc.
The study calls for an open pit that will be mined at a rate of 300,000 tonnes of ore per year for 20 years. Processing will include crushing, grinding, flotation, magnetic separation, thickening and drying to produce 46,600 t/y of various graphite grades and flake sizes. Average graphite recovery will be 91.3% from head grades of 15.66% Cgr (graphitic carbon). Approximately 40% of the concentrates will be subjected to thermal purification to upgrade the material to 99.99% Cgr.
The Lac Knife project has a pre-tax, net present value of $246 million (10% discount) and a 32% pre-tax internal rate of return. The total initial capital cost is $153.5 million, and the project will pay for itself in 2.8 years (pre-tax). Focus expects the average operating cost per tonne will be $435, assuming thermal purification on a contract basis.
Additional details from the PEA are posted at FocusGraphite.com.