Group 6 Metals (G6M) has reached commercial production at its Dolphin tungsten mine near the town of Grassy on King Island, separated from Tasmania by the Bass Strait. The mine operated from 1917 to 1992, first as a pit and then from underground. It was one of the highest-grade tungsten mines in the western world.
G6M has reopened the pit, reaching commercial rates (70% runtime) in June 2023. More than 10,000 tonnes of ore grading 0.3% tungsten oxide (WO3) was processed that month, and 10 tonnes of saleable concentrate was produced containing between 55% WO3 in course concentrate and 68% WO3 in fine concentrate.
The contract for the mineral processing plant was awarded to Gekko Systems. The plant has a capacity of 400,000 tonnes of ore annually. The flowsheet is largely based on gravity recovery (a specialty of Gekko) followed by a concentrate dressing circuit. Consideration is being given to increase scheelite recovery in the plant by the addition of leaching the fine tailings.
“We are proud to achieve commercial production of the Dolphin mine processing plant on King Island,” said Andrew Edmondston, CEO of Gekko Systems. “This project represents a remarkable achievement for Gekko, G6M, and the entire team involved. The processing plant will undoubtedly contribute to the sustainable supply of tungsten and support numerous industries that rely on this critical mineral.”
Learn more about processing solutions at www.GekkoS.com.