BY THE NORTHERN SUN NEWS STAFF
Based on current plans, Rubicon expects first commercial production for its Phoenix Gold Project in Q1 2016.
“Significant progress has been made at the Phoenix Gold Project to-date,” stated Michael A. Lalonde, president and chief executive officer of Rubicon, in an Aug. 20 press release.
“We are pleased to report that the mill commissioning has been completed, and is performing well. Mill recoveries have met and exceeded expectations. The grinding circuit is performing better than expected, achieving in excess of 80 tonnes per hour with run of mine material. However, we have experienced some delays in the underground during the initial extraction of the first trial stope.”
First off, a re-muck bay was developed into a known fault structure, which caused a fall of ground on the 183-metre level crosscut and resulted in delays in the development of two stopes. It was an isolated incident and remediation should be completed by the end of August.
Second, complications with the haulage system on the 305-metre level resulted in a required upgrade of the track and associated equipment, and the installation of a car dump at the 305-metre station waste pass. The work is scheduled for completion in September.
“These type of issues are common during the start-up phase of an underground project, and operational effectiveness is expected to improve as the Company gains experience and a better understanding of the nature of the Phoenix deposit,” reads the release.
Trial mining is well underway on the initial trial stope (305-030) between the 244 and 305-metre levels. This stope is approximately 50 per cent complete. It is anticipated that approximately 20,000 tonnes will be mined from the trial stope by the end of September. For more information, on the current development plan, visit www.rubiconminerals.com.
The Company is assessing its operational and capital expenditures, some of which are being reduced or deferred. The balance sheet remains sound, with current working capital of C$50 million.