Base Resources, owner and operator of the Kwale mineral sands mine in Kenya, has released updated Kwale South Dune Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves estimates, which promise to translate to an extension of the life of mine.
Base Resources announced, “The Kwale South Dune Ore Reserves estimate has been updated to incorporate existing estimated Mineral Resources located within the proposed expanded Kwale Special Mining Lease 23, increasing ore by 19Mt and contained heavy mineral by 0.6Mt.” This expansion promises to extend the Kwale Mine life to December 2023.
Kwale Mineral Sands Operations in Kenya is located approximately 50 kilometres south of Mombasa and 10 kilometres inland from the Kenyan coast and it accounts for approximately 65% of Kenya’s mining industry by mineral output value.
The operation features a high-grade ore body with a high value mineral assemblage, rich in rutile. Kwale is designed to process ore to recover ilmenite, rutile and zircon. The initial dozer mining has transitioned to a more well-suited and cost-effective use of hydraulic mining. Per Base Resources, “Ore is received at the wet concentrator plant from the mining units via a slurry pipeline. The wet concentrator plant removes slimes and concentrates the valuable heavy minerals with a number of gravity separation steps and rejects most of the non-valuable, lighter gangue minerals. The heavy mineral concentrate is then processed in the mineral separation plant. The mineral separation plant cleans and separates the rutile, ilmenite and zircon minerals into finished products for sale for export.”
Image by base resources