Australia

Cannington Mine

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Overview

Mine TypeUnderground
StatusActive
Commodities
  • Silver
  • Lead
  • Zinc
Mining Method
  • Longhole open stoping
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SnapshotCannington is one of the world’s largest producers of silver and lead and consists of an underground hard rock mine and surface processing facility, a road-to-rail transfer facility and a concentrate handling and ship loading facility at the Port of Townsville.

The transition to 100 per cent truck haulage to bring product to the surface was completed in FY23, bringing forward highergrade material. South32 are studying tailings reprocessing and open pit options to potentially extend the operation’s life.

Owners

SourceSource
CompanyInterestOwnershipInvestor's Info
South32 Limited 100 % Indirect
Cannington is 100 per cent owned by South32.

Contractors

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Deposit type

  • Metamorphic hosted
  • Broken Hill-type (BHT)

Summary:

Cannington is a Broken Hill Type (BHT) silver-lead-zinc massive sulphide deposit hosted by Proterozoic age high-grade metamorphic lithologies of the Soldiers Cap Group, located in the Eastern Succession of the Mount Isa Block. Mineralisation is stratiform bound along the limbs of a tight isoclinal recumbent synform with an easterly dip and a southerly plunge. The core of the synform is composed of amphibolite with encompassing silver-lead-zinc sulphide mineralisation. The mineralisation has been divided into nine types based on textural, mineralogical and geochemical characteristics which assist in defining metallurgical performance.

The Cannington mineralisation is hosted within a 70 m to 90 m thick of interbedded garnetiferous psammite and basic volcanic units that enclose a fine to medium grained central amphibolite body up to 100 m thick. The psammite is itself intercalated with muscovite-sillimanite schist and enclosed by migmatitic quartzon feldspathic gneiss. Pegmatite horizons that are semi-conformable within the deposit sequence are thought to be predominantly the result of partial melts of clastic rocks within this package (Mark, 1993).

Structure
The psammite sequence is folded into a tight, northerly striking isoclinal recumbent fold that plunges to the south with limbs dipping between 40O and 70O to the east as the result of the second of four structural events (D1 to D4) described by Bailey (1998). Two major northwest trending D4 faults offset the sequence. The Trepell Fault divides the ‘Northern Zone from the ‘Southern Zone’ and the Hamilton Fault forms a southern limit of the Southern Zone’. This Proterozoic host sequence is truncated up-plunge in then Northern Zone at the sub-horizontal unconformity with the younger Cretaceous sediments that are between 10 m and 60 m thick in the Cannington Operations area.

The Southern Zone has a strike length of 600 m to 700 m and extends to approximately 650 m below surface. The metamorphosed sediment package has been folded into a synform structure and is displaced on a local scale by north northeast and northeast trending faults. The northeast trending faults are interpreted as conjugate sets to the Trepell and Hamilton Faults as a result of sub- horizontal sinistral movement.

The Northern Zone strike is approximately 500 m and extends to around 400 m below surface. It is less deformed than the Southern Zone and typically dips east, interpreted as being the eastern limb of an antiform.

Mineralisation
Silver, lead and zinc mineralisation is stratiform within the garnetiferous psammite and mafic host rocks and varies in textural, mineralogical and geochemical characteristics that have been classified as ‘mineralisation types’. These are divided into footwall (western limb), hangingwall (eastern limb) and fold hinge lead-rich and zinc-rich domains, with the mafic rocks more complex in mineralogy than the siliceous rocks as mineralisation grades from outer Pb-Ag to inner zinc zones. The sulphide mineralogy is dominated by coarse grained galena (PbS), sphalerite (ZnS), with silver mainly contained in freibergite (Cu6(Ag,Fe)6Sb4S13).

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

CommodityUnits2024202320222021202020192018201720162015
Silver koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe12,20112,49115,60321,39322,601
Lead kt  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe101104132173183
Zinc kt  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe5241707972
Zinc Equivalent kt  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe194187
All production numbers are expressed as payable metal. ^ Guidance / Forecast.

Operational metrics

Metrics2024202320222021202020192018201720162015
Tonnes processed  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe2,495 kdmt2,355 kdmt3,036 kdmt3,149 kdmt3,289 kt
Ore tonnes mined  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe2,725 kwmt2,463 kwmt2,909 kwmt3,289 kwmt3,418 kt
Annual processing capacity  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe3.4 Mt
^ Guidance / Forecast.

Production Costs

Commodity production costs have not been reported.

Operating Costs

Currency20232022202120202019201820172016
Total operating costs ($/t milled) USD 153  133  124  113  123  150  133  145  

Financials

Units20242023202220212020201920182017
Capital expenditures (planned) M USD  ....  Subscribe
Growth Capital M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Sustaining costs M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 55   51   36  
Capital expenditures M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Revenue M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 467   584   768  
EBIT M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 104   183   308  
EBITDA M USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe 161   230   364  

Heavy Mobile Equipment

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Personnel

Mine Management

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EmployeesContractorsTotal WorkforceYear
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Aerial view:

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