Australia

Century Mine

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Categories

Overview

Mine TypeTailings
Commodities
  • Zinc
  • Lead
  • Silver
Mining Method
  • Hydraulic mining
Production Start... Lock
Mine Life... Lock
ShapshotThe Century zinc operation is a mine tailings mining and reprocessing operation.

In March 2023, production was severely impacted by adverse weather conditions which resulted in the flooding of the operation and the suspension of hydro mining for approximately three weeks. A return to normalised levels of production was achieved in mid-April 2023.

The economic feasibility of the remaining in-situ Silver King and remnant East Fault Block and South Block deposits continue to be assessed for their potential as stand-alone life extension projects post the depletion of the TSF, or as co-production with the TSF reprocessing.

Owners

SourceSource
CompanyInterestOwnership
Sibanye-Stillwater Ltd. 100 % Indirect
During 2023, the Group acquired 100% of New Century Resources Limited, which operates the Century zinc operation in Queensland.

Contractors

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Deposit type

  • Breccia pipe / Stockwork
  • Tailings
  • Vein / narrow vein

Summary:

Since acquiring the Century Mine, the Company restarted operations through the reprocessing of the large tailings Ore Reserve on the mine site.

The current tailings Ore Reserve provides base production, with in-situ resources providing additional production. The two in-situ deposits on the mining lease (Silver King and East Fault Block) are located less than 2km from the processing plant and have been used as the feed source for the plant, with two additional deposits on the Company’s leases (South Block and Watson’s Lode) to be assessed for potential mine life extension in due course.

Century Tailings Deposit
A single substantial tailings deposit exists at Century, generated from 16 years of large scale operations from the Century open pit.

Substantial recoverable zinc mineralisation exists in the tailings at Century, due to the historical focus on throughput maximisation as opposed to recovery maximisation. The nature of the original Century ore required extended flotation time and given the scale of the original Century deposit (105Mt at 12% Zn) a high throughput processing plant was constructed, achieving relatively modest recoveries (74% in 2015) over the life of operations.

Three independent metallurgical studies have been completed on the Century Tailings Deposit, demonstrating the tailings may be reprocessed through the existing plant on site with minor modifications to achieve recovery of >60% of remaining zinc mineralisation into a saleable ~52% zinc concentrate.

The simple reprocessing of the Century tailings provides a mechanism for the economic rehabilitation of the mine site, with the tailings area representing a significant portion of the current rehabilitation requirements. After reprocessing, the tailings are planned to be deposited back into the original open pit and encapsulated via subaqueous deposition.

In-situ
Silver King (Underground and Open Pit)
The Silver King deposit is a high-grade vein style deposit located to the south-west of the original open pit and extends along strike. Recent exploration work has highlighted the extension potential for Silver King, with an identified prospective Silver King vein repeat (to the south) and a splay off the main vein (to the north-west).

Silver King is a structurally hosted Pb-Zn quartz carbonate vein breccia. Mineral relationships in the veins suggest the sphalerite zinc mineralization occurred in one of the earlier phases, with later overprinting by massive galena (Pb-sulphide).

The Zinc rich fluids are more pervasive through the host rocks infilling much of the brecciated rock in the fault zone, and along the western H4r/H3 shale to sandstone lithological contact potentially due to contrasting brittle-elastic responses to stress within these rock masses.

The Pb zones appear more confined to the fault structure(s) and may indicate later reactivation and infill of the fault(s). The Pb zones are also significantly higher grade than the Zn overall.

East Fault Block Open Pit
The East Fault Block deposit is a pod of the original Century ore deposit and is located on the north-west corner of the previous run of mine (ROM) pad. The East Fault Block is a small deposit located 35m below the surface of the run-of-mine stockpile area at the mine site and extends to a depth of 112m.

South Block deposit
The South Block deposit was the final cutback of the original “Big Zinc” deposit and was never mined by the previous owners due to a site of cultural significance, known as Magazine Hill, located adjacent to the deposit.

Watson’s Lode deposit
The Watson’s Lode deposit is located on EPM 10544 surrounding the Century mining leases and is approximately 10km from the existing Century processing plant. Watson’s Lode is a vein-style system, consisting of predominately epithermal quartz carbonate breccias with varying contents of sphalerite, galena, chalcopyrite, pyrite and siderite.

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

In 2023 Century's results are included for the 10 months ended 31 December 2023 since the effective date of acquisition on 22 February 2023.
CommodityProductUnits20232022202120202019
Zinc Concentrate kt  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Zinc Payable metal M lbs  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Zinc Metal in concentrate M lbs  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe119
Silver Metal in concentrate koz  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Silver Payable metal koz  ....  Subscribe

Operational metrics

Metrics20232022202120202019
Annual processing capacity  ....  Subscribe
Ore tonnes mined  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Tonnes processed  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Annual mining rate  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe8 Mt
Annual production capacity  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe500,000 t of zinc concentrate

Production Costs

CommodityUnits20242023202220212020
All-in sustaining costs (AISC) Zinc USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
All-in costs Zinc USD  ....  Subscribe
C1 cash costs Zinc USD  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
^ Guidance / Forecast.
** Net of By-Product.

Financials

Units2024202320222021202020192018
Capital expenditures (planned) M ZAR  ....  Subscribe
Growth Capital M ZAR  ....  Subscribe
Sustaining costs M ZAR  ....  Subscribe
Capital expenditures M ZAR  ....  Subscribe
Revenue M  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Pre-tax Income M  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
After-tax Income M  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe -19.9  AUD -104.6  AUD
EBIT M  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
EBITDA M  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe
Operating Cash Flow M  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe

Heavy Mobile Equipment

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Personnel

Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required May 14, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required May 14, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required May 14, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required May 14, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required May 14, 2024

EmployeesContractorsTotal WorkforceYear
...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required ...... Subscription required 2023
...... Subscription required 2017

Aerial view:

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