Australian Mines’ subsidiary Sconi Mining Operations has received Mining Lease 10368 for the Sconi Battery Minerals Project in the Greenvale mining area in Queensland, Australia.

Valid for 25 years, the mining lease has been approved by the Queensland Department of Resources.

The Sconi project involves open-cut mining of known cobalt and nickel deposits at the site of the old Greenvale Nickel Mine and two nearby satellite deposits, Lucknow and Kokomo.

The project comprises three separate project areas near the township of Greenvale, Queensland.

Australian Mines said in a statement: “Australian Mines is pleased to secure this mining lease, which, combined with the Lucknow and Kokomo mining leases, contains the resources for the critical battery minerals at the Sconi Nickel-Cobalt-Scandium Project in North Queensland.”

With an estimated operational life of 30 years, the Sconi project will produce battery-grade nickel sulphate and cobalt sulphate with the potential to produce scandium oxide as a by-product.

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By GlobalData

Australian Mines is in talks about a potential collaborative partnership for the development of the Sconi project, which is due to be commissioned in 2028.

The company added: “Australian Mines continues to advance other activities for the project, including the environmental monitoring and studies and exploration works consistent with the timelines previously announced.”

In 2021, Australian Mines signed an offtake agreement with battery producer LG Energy Solutions for mixed nickel-cobalt hydroxide from the Sconi Project.

During the first six years of operations, the project will supply 71,000 dry metric tonnes of nickel and 7,000 dry metric tonnes of cobalt via a mixed nickel-cobalt hydroxide precipitate.