Breaker scopes out Bombora underground
4th August 2022
Breaker Resources says it can see “genuine scale” taking shape with the results of a preliminary study into the potential for underground mining below its proposed Bombora open pit within its 1.7 million ounce Lake Roe project south of Kalgoorlie, Western Australia (reports MiningNews).
The explorer has already assessed the potential to develop an open pit mine within the 1.5Moz Bombora deposit, high-grading within a 824,000oz shallow resource.
It now says underground mining of the Tura lode at depth could see it recover 93,000oz at 4.4 grams per tonne from a decline that could be established from the pit from year two.
The gold could be recovered over two years, at an estimated production cost of $1100/oz.
Depending on the gold price it expects to generate pre-tax cash flow of between $81-115 million.
The Tura lode is one of several emerging deeper discoveries that have been discovered since early 2021.
It remains open along strike.
With Tura's economics stacking up in the preliminary study, Breaker has decided to review the potential of the other lodes, all of which are yet to be fully defined, and are still being targeted with extensional drilling.
Three diamond rigs are drilling to grow the indicated underground resources and to assist mining studies.
Breaker managing director Tom Sanders said underground feed could complement any open pit production.
"The underground study is a first step in our analysis of the mining potential below the open pit resource. The positive outcome starts to highlight the upside of the other high-grade steep, flat and west-dipping lodes outlined over the last 18 months," he said.
"It is clear that we have the building blocks for a significant standalone operation that we can keep growing with further drilling".
Breaker decided to assess the underground potential after an open pit study in April that suggested a series of staged cut-backs extending over 3km of strike, it could generate $385 million in pre-tax free cash flow, from recovery of about 427,000oz.
The first step would be a 65m deep starter pit that could recover 95,000oz, generating about $166 million in one year.
It is looking to define a project that could support an investment in a processing plant.
It would need around $27 million to establish a decline.
Breaker is looking to complete a prefeasibility study this year.
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