Mining Intelligence and News

Galalar Project

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Mine TypeOpen Pit
  • Silica
Mining Method
  • Truck & Shovel / Loader
Mine Life... Lock
SnapshotOne of the largest high-purity silica exploration land packages in Australia, the Galalar Silica Sand Project (GSSP) covers an area of 542 sq km in Queensland’s Eastern Cape York region, around 200km north of Cairns.

A 2021 Pre-Feasibility Study showed the value of the project, with an estimated post-tax net present value (NPV) of A$358 million.

However, Diatreme is currently focused on its Northern Silica Project, with the GSSP remaining a key asset subject to future development.

Galalar Project anticipated to feed future Northern Silica Project production.


Diatreme Resources Ltd. 87.5 % Indirect
Hope Vale Congress Aboriginal Corporation holds a 12.50% interest in the Galalar project as the representative body for the traditional owners of the area.

Sibelco has become a major shareholder in Diatreme Resources Ltd.

In addition, Sibelco and Diatreme have agreed a joint venture to develop Diatreme’s emerging Galalar Silica Project and Northern Resource Project, supported by an investment from Sibelco of $35 million, split into two tranches of $11 million and $24 million respectively. The investment is subject to approval by Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB).

The investment quantum and resultant 26.8% fully diluted interest are based upon progressive group silica project valuations of $110m and $160m respectively.



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Deposit type

  • Mineral sands


The Galalar Deposit is a large surface deposit of overlying sand dunes that is part of the Quaternary age Cape Flattery-Cape Bedford dunefield complex. The deposit is dominated by clean high purity >98.5% silica (quartz) which is principally white, cream and light grey in colour, but also with variably dispersed yellow, orange and brown overtones.

The Galalar Deposit consists of two major paralleling dunes, nominally named Galalar East and Galalar West. The deposit extends approx. 3.4km long by 1.2km wide and ranges in vertical thickness from 6m to 32m. The dunes are elongate southeast to northwest and are densely but shallowly vegetated with topsoil to approx. 0.3m depth. The dunes are clearly defined on their long sides and by lower topography. The base of exploitable sand is defined by the water table and/or intersection with the basement consisting of either ‘B1’ orange-brown coloured sand horizon (“coloured sands”) or the clay basement of older weathered bedrock.

The silica sand is consistently high grade throughout, >98.5% SiO2, with variable but minor proportions of Al2O3, Fe2O3 and TiO2 due to the presence of minor clay, iron oxides and heavy minerals.



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Mining Methods


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Crushers and Mills

Milling equipment has not been reported.



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CommodityUnitsAvg. Annual
Silica Mt 1.3

Operational metrics

Annual ore mining rate  ....  Subscribe
Annual processing capacity  ....  Subscribe
Ore tonnes mined, LOM  ....  Subscribe
Tonnes processed, LOM  ....  Subscribe
* According to 2021 study.

Production Costs

C1 cash costs Silica  ....  Subscribe
Assumed price Silica  ....  Subscribe
* According to 2021 study / presentation.

Operating Costs

Total operating costs ($/t milled) AUD 26.9 *  
* According to 2021 study.

Project Costs

MetricsUnitsLOM Total
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Royalty payments $M AUD  ......  Subscribe
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EBITDA (LOM) $M AUD  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax NPV @ 8% $M AUD  ......  Subscribe
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After-tax IRR, %  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax payback period, years  ......  Subscribe

Heavy Mobile Equipment

Fleet data has not been reported.


Mine Management

Job TitleNamePhoneEmailProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required ........... Subscription required ........... Subscription required Subscription required Jan 10, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Jan 10, 2024

Total WorkforceYear
...... Subscription required 2021


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