Global Atomic is set to break ground on the Dasa Uranium Project in the Republic of Niger in January 2022, having concluded the Phase I project feasibility study.
The study has found the project to be ‘economically compelling’, even at a cost of $35 per pound U3O8.
The Canadian mining firm plans to start underground development at the project in April 2022, with the processing plant expected to be commissioned by the end of 2024.
In a press statement, Global Atomic said: “The study proves the viability of the project and will serve as the basis for the company to negotiate project financing, advance off-take agreement discussions with utilities, finalise detailed engineering and select an EPCM contractor to build the processing plant.”
The feasibility study is focused solely on phase one of the project comprising the Flank Zone.
With an estimated initial capital cost of $208m, the Dasa project is expected to recover 45.4 million pounds (Mlb) of U3O8 over a mine life of 12 years, according to the study.
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According to estimates, the mine has a reserve of 4.3Mt grading 5,184ppm U3O8.
Located in Niger’s Tim Mersoï Basin, the Dasa Project is expected to have an annual average steady-state uranium production of 3.8Mlb U3O8.
Global Atomic president and CEO Stephen G Roman said that the firm will now negotiate project funding, advance offtake negotiations with utilities, and complete detailed engineering.
The company will also complete the bidding process for an EPCM contract to build and commission the processing plant.
Roman added: “The mining industry has seen significant pandemic-induced increases in input costs since the PEA was completed in 2020.
“We are very pleased to have duplicated our previous PEA project capital costs and thank METC Engineering, Bara Consulting, Insight R&D and Process Research Ortech for their excellent work in this regard.”
Following completion of phase one, the company will continue with underground mining under Phase II.
After many decades and under Phase III, the firm plans to consider open-pit mining for the lower-grade surface mineralisation at the project.