South Africa

Mototolo Complex

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Overview

Mine TypeUnderground
Commodities
  • PGM
  • Platinum
  • Palladium
  • Rhodium
  • Iridium
  • Ruthenium
  • Gold
  • Nickel
  • Copper
Mining Method
  • Bord-and-pillar
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Mine Life... Lock
ShapshotMototolo Mine and Der Brochen project have merged and now report as a consolidated complex.

Mototolo Complex infrastructure consists of two decline shafts, a concentrator, and a chromite processing plant.

The operation was transformed into a PGM complex following the incorporation and extension of the life of asset in 2021. The complex is focused on extending the life of asset and remaining in the first half of the cost curve. The UG2 Reef is the primary reef being mined.

The 100% acquisition of Mototolo Mine and the subsequent transfer of the mining rights to Anglo American Platinum allowed for the approval and execution of the Der Brochen south project feasibility study in 2021. This project substantially increased the UG2 Reef Ore Reserves and extended the life of asset beyond 50 years.
Related Asset

Owners

SourceSource
CompanyInterestOwnership
Anglo American plc. 76.99 % Indirect
Rustenburg Platinum Mines Ltd. (operator) 100 % Direct
Ownership Tree
Anglo American plc. through its subsidiary Rustenburg Platinum Mines owns 76.99% of the Mototolo mine.

Contractors

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Deposit type

  • Magmatic

Summary:

The Mototolo – Der Brochen Complex, is an important part of Anglo American’s PGMs portfolio, located in the eastern limb of the Bushveld Complex, South Africa. It lies within mountainous topography southwest of Burgersfort and west of Lydenburg with elevations varying between 975m and 2,000m above mean sea level.

Mototolo is located in the Eastern Limb of the Bushveld Complex, where the Merensky and UG2 Reefs outcrops strike north to south over approximately 13km and dip at an average of 10° to the west. The UG2 Reef is characterised by a single thick chromitite layer known as the main band, followed by an overlying poikilitic feldspathic pyroxenite and a series of chromitite layers. These narrow chromitite layers that occur in the hangingwall of the UG2 main band are collectively termed the triplets. The three chromitite stringers vary in thickness from 2cm to 5cm (triplet 1), 10cm to 25cm (triplet 2), and approximately 5mm (triplet 3). The immediate footwall of the UG2 is usually a pegmatoidal feldspathic pyroxenite, which varies in thickness from a few centimetres to over 1m. Localised internal pyroxenite or anorthosite-rich layers can occur within the UG2 main chromitite band, creating areas of ‘split-reef’ facies. The vertical separation between the Merensky Reef and UG2 Reef horizons is approximately 170m.

Mototolo is a mechanised, low-cost, high-quality Platinum Group Metals (PGMs) mine, accessed by two decline shafts; Lebowa in the north and Borwa in the south. Current mining operations are focused on the UG2 Reef with exposures of the Merensky Reef limited to several historic adits over the strike length.

The Merensky and UG2 Reefs are vertically separated by approximately 175m and strike almost north-south over an outcrop length of 11 to 12km, dipping between 10° and 12° in a westerly direction. Continuity to a depth in excess of 2,000m has been established on the western limit of the lease area.

The UG2 Reef is characterised by a single chromitite layer known as the Main Band (averaging 1.18m in thickness) overlain by a poikilitic feldspathic pyroxenite (approximately 1.07m) and a series of narrow chromitite layers. These chromitite layers occurring in the hangingwall of the UG2 have been collectively classified as the ‘Triplets’ with an average thickness of 0.80m. The first triplet, UT1, is normally 2 to 5cm thick followed by UT2, a diffuse chromitite layer that is approximately 10 to 25cm thick with a characteristic pegmatoidal, pyroxenite hangingwall (UTPEG). The UTPEG is overlain by a thin chromitite layer (UT3) approximately 5mm in thickness.

The Merensky Reef is a 2 to 5m thick feldspathic pyroxenite with the base of this unit marked by a well-defined 1 to 2cm chromitite layer (MRB). A second less consistent chromitite layer (MRT) occurs near the top of the Merensky pyroxenite. Platinum Group Element (PGE) mineralisation is concentrated in the vicinity of these chromitite layers. The Merensky Reef pyroxenite is overlain by a gradational succession of melanorite, norite, leuconorite and anorthosite.

The north/south trending St George fault traverses through the mine and represents a natural boundary that divides the mine into a ‘shallow’ eastern, and an upthrown ‘deep’ (offset of 30-60m from north to south) western portion. On average, an 80-300m wide corridor in the proximity of the fault including a highly fractured damage zone (interpreted from 3D seismic surveys), has been assigned a 100% geological loss.

The Helena pothole is located immediately south of Borwa shaft and represents an area of severe slumping and destructive potholing. Dykes are predominantly dolerite/diabase in composition and of Karoo age with little variation in strike directions and steep dips, with the Caracle dyke swarm traversing the Der Brochen south area. Whilst the main structural trend is north north-east/south south-west, most small-scale faulting in the mining operations is trending north-west/south-east. A regional depression is currently interpreted west of the St George fault on Richmond farm.

Reserves

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Mining Methods

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Comminution

Crushers and Mills

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Processing

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Production

CommodityUnits20232022202120202019201820172016
PGM koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe242326185252
Platinum koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe11215085117
Palladium koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe69945371
Rhodium koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe19261420
Iridium koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe7.59.85.67.8
Ruthenium koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe33442535
Gold koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe1.92.61.42
Nickel kt  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe0.40.60.40.4
Copper M lbs  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe0.40.40.40.4
All production numbers are expressed as metal in concentrate.

Operational metrics

Metrics202320222021202020192018201720162015
Ore tonnes mined  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe2.4 Mt2.4 Mt2,674 kt2,558 kt
Tonnes milled  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe2,320 kt3,108 kt1,908 kt2,568 kt2,572 kt

Production Costs

CommodityUnits2023202220212020201920182017
Cash costs PGM USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 672 / oz   678 / oz   691 / oz  
Cash costs Platinum USD 1,454 / oz   1,473 / oz   1,496 / oz  
All-in sustaining costs (sold) 3E (Pt, Pd, Au) USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 902 / oz **  
All-in sustaining costs (sold) PGM USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 879 / oz **   837 / oz **   775 / oz **  
All-in sustaining costs (sold) Platinum USD  ....  Subscribe 73 / oz **   684 / oz **   1,033 / oz **  
** Net of By-Product.

Operating Costs

Currency20232022202120202019201820172016
Total operating costs ($/t milled) ZAR 1,561  1,213  1,142  1,122  879  815  786  678  

Financials

Units2023202220212020201920182017
Sustaining costs M ZAR  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 488   458   234  
Capital expenditures M ZAR  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 433   407   217  
Revenue M ZAR  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 4,506   4,060   2,436  
EBIT M ZAR  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 1,572   798   334  
EBITDA M ZAR  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 1,956   1,182   534  
Operating Cash Flow M ZAR  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe -82  

Heavy Mobile Equipment

Fleet data has not been reported.

Personnel

Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 12, 2024
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EmployeesContractorsTotal WorkforceYear
...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required 2023
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...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required 2021
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...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required 2017
...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required 2016
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Aerial view:

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