By Oscar Nkala
Australian miner Mustang Resources Limited says there are high prospects of producing vanadium concentrate from the processing of graphite at its Caula Graphite Project in Mozambique.
In a statement sent out to shareholders on March 15, the company said the production of vanadium concentrate would substantially boost its cash flow position. The Caula Graphite Project is expected to transition to the production phase in mid-2019.
“The review also established that Stage 1 of Caula will produce vanadium concentrate, which can be either sold or stockpiled for further processing to high purity vanadium products as part of Stage 2. The extensive review was conducted alongside the Concept Study, which is set for completion in the June 2018 quarter,” the company said.
The high prospect of vanadium production is believed to have contributed to the recent 40% surge in the company’s share price on Australian Stock Exchange (ASX). According to recent assessments, the Caula Graphite Project holds a unique combination of high grade and large, flake-sized graphite deposits.
It has a maiden underground mineralisation resource of 5.4 million tonnes at an average of 13% graphitic carbon, with an estimated graphite content of up to 700 000 tonnes. Three major production phases are planned starting in mid-2019.
The first stage development strategy entails a low-cost mining operation with a production target of 100 000 tonnes ore, with an expected yield of between 10 000 and 15 000 tonnes of high-grade graphite per annum. Minimal quantities of vanadium concentrate are expected from the graphite production process.
The second development stage will see production scaled up to 600 000 tonnes of ore, with an expected yield of between 50 000 tonnes and 75 000 tonnes of high-grade graphite concentrate per annum. The process is expected to yield 2 000 tonnes of high purity vanadium chemicals per annum.