Chile

Candelaria Complex

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Overview

Mine TypeOpen Pit & Underground
StatusActive
Commodities
  • Copper
  • Gold
  • Silver
Mining Method
  • Truck & Shovel / Loader
  • Sub-level open stoping (SLOS)
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SnapshotThe Candelaria Copper Mining Complex comprises two adjacent copper mining operations, Candelaria (open pit and underground mine) and Ojos del Salado (two underground mines: Santos and Alcaparrosa).

The Candelaria Copper Mining Complex operates two processing plants: Candelaria (receives ore from the Candelaria open pit, the Candelaria underground mine and part of the Santos underground mine) and PAC (receives ore exclusively from the Santos underground mine).

Extending the operational life includes the development of the La Española open pit and the potential development of the Candelaria Underground Expansion Project.
Related AssetsCandelaria Mine, Española Project, Ojos Del Salado Mine

Owners

SourceSource
CompanyInterestOwnership
Sumitomo Corp. 4 % Indirect
Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., Ltd 16 % Indirect
Lundin Mining Corp. 80 % Indirect
The Candelaria Copper Mining Complex is indirectly owned by Lundin Mining Corporation (80%) and Sumitomo Metals Mining Co., Ltd. and Sumitomo Corporation (collectively, Sumitomo) (20%).

Contractors

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Deposit type

  • Breccia pipe / Stockwork
  • IOCG
  • Vein / narrow vein
  • Manto

Summary:

Deposit Types
The copper-gold sulphide mineralization present at the Candelaria Copper Mining Complex is generally referred to as iron oxide copper gold (IOCG). Depending on lithology and the structural setting, the polymetallic sulphide mineralization can occur as veins, hydrothermal breccias, replacement mantos, and calcic skarns (Sillitoe, 2003).

The Candelaria IOCG deposit lies within the metamorphic aureole of the Lower Cretaceous magmatic arc plutonic complex that is located within the Candelaria-Punta del Cobre district, Atacama Region, northern Chile. IOCG deposits are primarily defined by their elevated magnetite and / or hematite with elevated copper and gold contents (Sillitoe, 2003). The IOCG belt located in the Coastal Cordillera of northern Chile and southern Peru is part of a volcano-plutonic arc of Jurassic to Early Cretaceous age. The arc is characterized by voluminous tholeiitic to calc-alkaline plutonic complexes of gabbro to granodiorite composition and primitive, mantle-derived parentage. Major arc-parallel fault systems developed in response to extension and transtension induced by subduction roll-back at the retreating convergent margin.

Most of the sulphide mineralization at Candelaria and Ojos del Salado occurs in breccias, stockwork veinlets, and disseminations in andesite, especially where the rocks are strongly foliated. Highergrade copper mineralization is controlled by stratigraphy in mantos and by faults, trending predominantly northwest. The host rocks are thermally metamorphosed (hornfels and skarn) in the aureole of the Copiapó Batholith, within 1 kilometre from the intrusion. The top of the mineralization system consists of magnetite-amphibole skarn within calcareous meta-tuff mineralized with pyrrhotite, pyrite and chalcopyrite.

Mineralization
Mineralization at the Candelaria Mine
The main mineralized body at the Candelaria mine is hosted in rocks of the Punta del Cobre Formation. Specifically, the host rocks are massive andesite and andesite breccias of the Lower Andesite, and volcanic tuffs and volcaniclastic rocks comprising the base of the Upper Andesite. In the metasedimentary rock unit, the mineralization is confined to a few isolated layers (mantos).

The mineralized body is up to 400 metres thick in its central part and thins towards the edges. In east-west sections, the mineralization has a lenticular, downward concave shape with a steep eastern limb and a moderately steep dipping western limb. The shape of the mineralized body in north-south section is irregular. In plan view, the extent of the mineralization is approximately 1,400 metres by 2,400 metres. The mineralized body was folded after its formation. The northnortheast-trending fold axis corresponds to the Tierra Amarilla Anticline.

The mineralization assemblage in the Candelaria mine consists of chalcopyrite, magnetite, pyrite, pyrrhotite, and sphalerite. Biotite, calc-silicate minerals, and potassium feldspar constitute the gangue minerals. Pervasive potassic alteration is associated with the mineralization.

Dominant copper mineralization styles are mantos, veins, breccia bodies, and veinlets along foliation planes. Gold occurs within chalcopyrite grains and along fractures surface in pyrite. Chalcopyrite and pyrite also occur in secondary northwest and north-northwest-striking faults.

Mineralization at the Española Project
In the Española project area, the primary dominant copper sulphide is chalcopyrite found as clusters and in disseminated form commonly associated with brown garnet porphyroblasts. Gangue minerals are pyrite and iron oxides (magnetite-hematite). Near the surface and down to a depth of approximately 70, the mineralization is oxidized, characterized by the presence of chrysocolla, malachite, native copper, diogenite and bornite.

The mineralized bodies are arranged as mantos and are hosted mainly in the brown garnet skarn and in less proportion in silica hornfels. Locally in the south part of the project veins and veinlets of metric thicknesses are observed that were interpreted in parallel to the Española vein-fault.

Mineralization at the Santos Mine
Chalcopyrite is the only primary copper sulphide present in the Santos mine. In addition to copper mineralization, there are economic values of gold. Most frequent gangue minerals are pyrite, magnetite, actinolite, potassic feldspar, chlorite, biotite and hematite.

In the Santos mine, three styles of mineralized bodies are observed: veins, mantos, and breccia bodies. An important vein in the Santos mine is the Isabel Vein, which is oriented northwest-striking, and extends over 1 kilometre in length and between 4 and 30 metres in width. Manto-type mineralization occurs as tabular bodies located at two sedimentary horizons located in the floor and roof of the albitophyre. The manto mineralization is characterized by variable iron contents with magnetite common in the north and deeper areas, and specular hematite in the south. Mineralization occurs within breccia bodies is typically contained with the albitophyre and lower andesite and is formed by steeply west-dipping and north-northwest- to northwest-striking bodies.

Mineralization at the Alcaparrosa Mine
Mineralization at the Alcaparrosa mine principally occurs as mantos that trend to the northeast and dip to the west. Ore mineralogy consists of chalcopyrite, pyrite, and magnetite, with trace pyrrhotite, molybdenite, and arsenopyrite. Mineralization at the Alcaparrosa mine also occurs as veinlets defining dense stockwork, breccias (hydrothermal potassium feldspar and magnetite) as well as fine dissemination in biotite meta-andesites. High-grade bodies are also found in massive veins striking north-northwest, north, and east.

Reserves

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Mining Methods

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Comminution

Crushers and Mills

Milling equipment has not been reported.

Processing

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Production

CommodityUnits2024202320222021202020192018201720162015
Copper M lbs  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe323297405367399
Gold koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe887810497102
Silver koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe1,3051,2071,8211,6651,874
All production numbers are expressed as metal in concentrate. ^ Guidance / Forecast.

Operational metrics

Metrics202320222021202020192018201720162015
Annual processing capacity  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe28.3 Mt
Ore tonnes mined  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe28,753 kt17,799 kt28,005 kt30,915 kt33,922 kt
Tonnes milled  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe26,287 kt27,585 kt29,435 kt31,938 kt30,133 kt
Daily milling capacity  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe78,800 t78,800 t78,800 t78,800 t

Production Costs

CommodityUnits20242023202220212020201920182017
Credits (by-product) Copper USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe -0.28 / lb   -0.22 / lb   -0.22 / lb  
Cash costs (sold) Copper USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 1.82 / lb   1.9 / lb   1.44 / lb  
Cash costs (sold) Copper USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 1.54 / lb **   1.68 / lb **   1.22 / lb **  
All-in sustaining costs (sold) Copper USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 2.88 / lb **   3.34 / lb **   2.04 / lb **  
^ Guidance / Forecast.
** Net of By-Product.

Financials

Units20242023202220212020201920182017
Capital expenditures (planned) M USD  ....  Subscribe
Capital expenditures M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 367.3   498.6   335  
Sustaining costs M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 367.3   491   322.6  
Revenue M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 896.3   838.8   1,230  
Gross profit M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 180.6   181   563.7  
Operating Income M USD 756.1  
After-tax Income M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 99.5   109.7   392.7  

Heavy Mobile Equipment

Fleet data has not been reported.

Personnel

Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 3, 2024
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EmployeesContractorsTotal WorkforceYear
...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required 2023
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...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required 2020

Aerial view:

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