Awarded Araguaia Line 2 Feasibility Study, aiming to double nickel production to 29,000 tpa;
Anticipated low capital intensity through leveraging the shared infrastructure and services from Line 1;
AACEI Class 3 standard cost estimate;
Line 2 process plant sits within the existing industrial area;
Trade off to allow a percentage of production to be converted to nickel matte; and
Targeting 2H 2023 publication of Line 2 Feasibility Study.
Horizonte Minerals Plc (AIM/TSX: HZM) (“Horizonte” or the “Company”) a nickel company developing two Tier 1 assets in Brazil, reports that it has awarded contracts for the Line 2 Feasibility Study (“FS”) at its Araguaia Nickel Project (“Araguaia” or “the Project”). The second line at Araguaia is expected to increase production by 100% to 29,000 tonnes of nickel per year through the construction of a duplicate RKEF processing facility (“Line 2”).
The aim of the FS is to produce a NI 43-101 Feasibility Report supported by a AACEI Class 3-quality cost estimate, and project execution plan. The Company is targeting publication of the results of the study in 2H 2023. The principal contractors for this work are:
Snowden - geology, mine design, mine planning and NI 43-101 reporting;
Environment Resources Management (ERM)- environmental permitting outline planning;
Reta Engineering - cost estimation, execution scheduling and planning services;
Draft Solutions - lead engineer, basic engineering design and documentation; and
Afry Poyry - Process engineering support.
These groups are all key contributors to the engineering, costing and construction work currently underway on Line 1 at Araguaia and have extensive knowledge and understanding of the Project.
The Line 2 FS is expected to demonstrate a mine life of over 25 years with a production capacity of approximately 29,000 tonnes of nickel per year at Araguaia. Line 2 will deliver greater production flexibility, lower capital intensity and increased operating margins. As part of the FS, an option will be designed into the flow sheet to allow a portion of the furnace product from Line 2 to be converted to nickel matte allowing Araguaia not only to produce high-grade low impurity ferronickel but also matte that can be upgraded to feed directly into the electric vehicle battery chemistry supply chain.
The Araguaia Plant has been designed and optimised to allow for the build out of Line 2 with key fixed infrastructure sized to support both lines, reducing the overall cost of developing Line 2.
Jeremy Martin, CEO of Horizonte, commented:
“The award of the Line 2 FS is an important step in achieving our goal of Araguaia becoming a scalable, low-cost nickel operation. Line 1 and Line 2 together are designed to produce 29,000 tpa of nickel with the overall resource of 119 million tonnes able to support this scenario with the potential to increase the mine life in the future. We are also excited about the potential of having the option to produce nickel matte giving us the ability to participate in different parts of the nickel market.
“We are making solid progress on the construction of Araguaia Line 1, which remains on-budget and on-schedule to produce first nickel in 1Q 2024, whilst simultaneously preparing for our next growth phase with Vermelho’s Feasibility Study expected to be finalised in 2024.”
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