Intermin Resources has started maiden gold production from the Teal Gold Mine located approximately 11km north west of Kalgoorlie-Boulder in Western Australia.
The company commenced the development of the project in November last year with waste overburden removal primarily from the northern section of the pit to recover ore situated closest to surface and ensure continuous mining during grade control drilling.
Drill and blast were required in the calcrete layer situated near the surface to maximise productivity and lower levels below the free dig material.
The process requires additional time and meticulous execution to avoid ore dilution.
Intermin managing director Jon Price said: “First gold production at Teal is a significant milestone for the Company and opens up a new mining centre in the Western Australian goldfields given the significant exploration success to date.
“Despite recent heavy rainfall slowing the mining schedule, it is extremely pleasing to see Teal now performing well with tonnages and grades in the north of the pit matching our expectations.
“We now look forward to continuous production that will generate cash to grow the business through self funded exploration and development of our mining pipeline.”
Last month, the mining staff were mobilised to the southern section to complete grade control drilling in the north.
The site was deeply affected by severe rainfall and flooding in the last two months that also impacted access to the mine for more than two weeks.
The company carried out a considerable clean-up at the project though no major damage was reported due to floods.
Intermin also completed grade control modelling and ore block delineation at the northern half of the pit as mining of the first ore blocks started.
The smaller 1200 excavator was deployed to the north for ore mining to minimise ore dilution as the larger 1800 excavator continues pre-stripping waste in the south to the 320mRL.
Grade control drilling in the south will commence in April to enable continuous ore mining to project completion. Individual ore batches (10,000t to 15,000t) will be trucked to Paddington regularly which will get processed after delivery.
Under the terms of the Paddington ore sale agreement announced last year, Paddington will pay 50% gross revenue based on 80% of the mine predicted grade within 15 days.
The remaining amount will be paid upon completion of final grade, moisture, metallurgical recovery and cost reconciliation within the following six weeks.
Image: First ore getting delivered from the Teal Stage 1 open cut. Photo: courtesy of Intermin Resources