Major Mining Project - Mount Peake

 
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
The Mount Peake Project is a world class strategic metals asset, located in Australia’s northern development hub, approximately 230km north of Alice Springs.

Mount Peake’s development will be a major boost for the Northern Territory economy, leveraging off its strategic location close to existing power and transport infrastructure, including the Alice Springs-Darwin railway, the Stuart Highway and an LNG pipeline.



Looks like some serious business for the rail line in the NT but no spur.

https://www.tngltd.com.au/project/mount-peake-v-ti-fe/overview/

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  bingley hall Minister for Railways

Location: Last train to Skaville
Wow! A whole $9 million in the bank, that won't even pay for a dirt road to connect the mine to the railhead Razz
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
Looks like some serious business for the rail line in the NT but no spur.Ore would be road hauled to a new siding on the main line.

Deposit wholly owned by ASX:TNG.

TNG is an Australian resource and mineral processing technology company progressing towards development of its 100% owned world-class Mount Peake Vanadium-Titanium-Iron Project. The Mount Peake Project is a potential world-scale strategic resource for these rare minerals.

The deposit  is only tens of millions of tonnes of ore, not like billions of tonnes needed to justify, say, a Fortesque Railway iron ore branch. The mine has only a short life. There would be a dedicated mine-siding haulage road of about 100km  in length.

The siding might have lasting value as an additional crossing loop. There is an existing crossing loop (no goods siding) at Illoquara, halfway between Alice Springs and Tennant Creek. Would the rail loading facility be put there? It is a  pity that TNG Limited doesn't say this for certain..

See https://www.sa-trackandsignal.net/Pdf%20files/SACountry/GWXP.pdf

See https://www.sa-trackandsignal.net/Pdf%20files/SACountry/GW1819.pdf

Distances
* Alice Springs     1337.0km
* * Stuart Hwy  overpass 1351.688km
* * Plenty Hwy level xing  1419.316km
* Illoquara            1564.3km
* Tennant Creek   1802.5km


Edited 7 times
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
The Mount Peake Project is a world class strategic metals asset, located in Australia’s northern development hub, approximately 230km north of Alice Springs.

230km puts the rail siding fairly close to Illoquara loop; 1334km + 230km = 1564km. Can someone check this?  Check position of Stuart Hwy overpass and Plenty Hwy level crossing

A rail siding has to be fairly complete before it can be used at all.
bevans
On the other hand, a haulage road can start as a dirt track, with Fords in the dry season, and expensive Bridges only needed for year-round wet season traffic later on. Etc. Etc.


See https://www.railpage.com.au/f-p141936.htm

E1109 looking for ways to find Illoquora.

Unhelpfully the map on the first page does not give the rail siding a name, if indeed it has one.
  Lockspike Chief Commissioner

Forecast average production of 606000 tonnes/annum; say, 2 trains/week.

What load is a 3100kWh loco allowed Alice Springs - Darwin?
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
Forecast average production of 606000 tonnes/annum; say, 2 trains/week.

What load is a 3100kWh loco allowed Alice Springs - Darwin?
Does the mine lie in the Dry/Wet season weather zone? Do bridges need to replace cheaper fords?

Does the mine have have much over-burden so that mining can commence sooner rather the later?

Market capitalisation of TNG is currently about $98m at 8c per share. See ASX:TNG .

Distance
* Illoquora            1564km
* Darwin East Arm 2756km
* _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ______
* Ill-DEA               1192km difference.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
My point is a spur would be a better option for the mine as those trucks continually crossing the highway is a BAD IDEA.  Plus it would be cheaper for the mine and no need for trucks.

No mention of the rail connection at Darwin for the processing facility but expect there will need to be one.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

Why is it a bad idea for haul trucks to cross the highway on a simple precast overpass? Impact on the highway would be the same as a rail overpass, no?

When even the investment pitches concede that the mine will be there for a good time not for a long time, you definitely know no spur line is going to get built.

The investors will want to get it producing and bringing in returns as soon as possible and as cheaply as possible with a haul road, not have their capital tied up for years waiting on an expensive rail construction project.
  bingley hall Minister for Railways

Location: Last train to Skaville
When the spin for a mining project starts with "world class strategic metals asset" you know there's a less than 50% chance of it ever going ahead.

Hands up all those that remember Centrex Metals on the Eyre Peninsula Razz
  kipioneer Chief Commissioner

Location: Aberfoyle Park
When the spin for a mining project starts with "world class strategic metals asset" you know there's a less than 50% chance of it ever going ahead.

Hands up all those that remember Centrex Metals on the Eyre Peninsula Razz
bingley hall
I was thinking of that today in view of the controversy over the Smith Bay wharf proposal on Kangaroo Island and our Minister for Planning (KI local Vicki Chapman who has a farm 50 km or so further west falling foul of the (somewhat unruly at the moment) parliament.
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
My point is a spur would be a better option for the mine as those trucks continually crossing the highway is a BAD IDEA.  Plus it would be cheaper for the mine and no need for trucks.
bevans
Just as the Stuart Highway crosses the railway on a bridge, the haulage road could cross the Highway on a bridge too. Plenty Hwy crosses the railway with a level crossing with flashing lights. Hopefully a site can be found for a cheaper and shorter bridge where the highway is already located in a cutting or embankment.

How many truck loads per week would be needed to carry the ore from main to railhead?

BTW, according to the map on the first post, the processing plant is to be located near the mine.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

A precast concrete arch and a dirt ramp on each side would be cheaper to do in the open than to find a cutting.

Building over a cutting means making the haul road navigate the hilly terrain around that cutting.
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
When the spin for a mining project starts with "world class strategic metals asset" you know there's a less than 50% chance of it ever going ahead.

Hands up all those that remember Centrex Metals on the Eyre Peninsula Razz
bingley hall

See ASX:CXM for share price and market cap.

Fortunate are those mines whose billion tonne (truly world class) deposit lies next (say 10km) to an existing railway currently being upgraded by others to carry 5Mt/y of traffic for 600km. Such as Canyon Resources and its large and high grade bauxite deposit in Cameroon. Upgrading of about 21 rail bridges for heavier axleloads is almost complete. This metre gauge railway is run by the Camrail franchisor.

For bridge upgrade info, see Canyon Resources confirms Minim Martap rail bridges can deal with its extra bauxite tonnage - Stockhead

A 100km or so rail link to the new deep water port of Kribi is proposed to allow a significant increase in export tonnage. The existing port at Douala is shallow water and has limited spare capacity. Kribi port and its planned township are also intended to extend 650km to iron ore deposits inland at Mbalam, etc. Cameroon is a fairly stable country. Bauxite is the ore for Aluminum metal.

See ASX:CAY. Market cap about $63m at $0.090c. Probably a better deal than CXM or TNG for similar size mining companies. Google "ASX:CAY" for more information.

Declaration: the writer owns shares in ASX:CAY.

Edited 8 times.
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
Forecast average production of 606,000 tonnes/annum; say, 2 trains/week.

What load is a 3100kWh loco allowed Alice Springs - Darwin?
For ASX:TNG 606kT/year is about 3kT per train (50 weeks per year)

For ASX:CAY 5MT/year at 3kT per train is about 1666 trains/year or 33 trains per week or 5 trains per day (7 days per week. 50 weeks per year with 2 weeks spare for contingencies). The bauxite mine is at Minim-Martap.

CAY would probably have fewer but heavier trains as the single line might get congested otherwise. May need longer crossing loops.

CAY/Camrail need to spend about $120m on other infrastructure:
* locomotives
* rolling stock
* some curve, gradient and heavier rail improvements on original line between Douala port and Yaoundé capital.
* communications and signalling
* ore loader and branch line from mine
* port and ore unloader at Douala port.
* 100km branch to Kribi port may not be included.

Camrail/Canyon have already spent about $300m on needed upgrades and needs to spend about another $120m. The large tonnage justifies this expenditure. By comparison Mt Peake carries small if tiny tonnages and its spending needs to be frugal.  

See https://www.railpage.com.au/news/s/canyon-resources-buoyed-by-extensive-rail-upgrade-work-in-cameroon (extensive upgrades)
See https://www.railpage.com.au/news/s/locos-arrive-in-cameroon (5 new locos)

PS. What is the size of the bulk ore carriers that port Darwin East Arm can handle?

Edited 12 times.
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
MOUNTAIN PEAKE - VALUE OF DIFFERENT ORES

No one at Railpage seems to have considered the implications of the values of the different ores, V, Ti and Fe. Suppose that their grades and values are (guessed) as follows:

Indicated and Inferred Resource totalling 160Mt, grading 0.28% V205, 5.3% TiO2 and 23% Fe

* V    0.28% $10.00c per kg ($US8/pound)
* Ti   5.30%   $4.80c per kg ($4800 per tonne)
* Fe 23.00%  $0.15c per kg (  $150 per tonne, cheaper than bread or milk at $1.50/L)

By all means update these figures if you can.

All the costs of the haulage road are due to the Fe, which is of so little value that it might as well be dumped near the processing plant near the time. The processing plant is near the mine.

The weight of the remaining V and Ti is so small it could be carried to the railhead almost by helicopter. So no need for an expensive haulage road. The Pilbara mines and others can supply the Fe instead.


The investors will want to get it producing and bringing in returns as soon as possible and as cheaply as possible with a haul road, not have their capital tied up for years waiting on an expensive rail construction project. The mine is an open pit, so a quick start is possible.
justapassenger

@justapassenger is quite right. Smile

Edited 5 times.
  WimbledonW Chief Train Controller

Location: Sydney
MOUNT PEAKE MINE – some alternatives.



Speaking about the “small” Mount Peake V-Ti-Fe mine, @justapassenger says: "The investors will want to get it producing and bringing in returns as soon as possible and as cheaply as possible with a haul road, not have their capital tied up for years waiting on a 110km expensive rail construction project."



Better still, avoid the need for a haul road at all, thus.



Mount Peake has three different minerals, V, Ti and Fe. While the V and Ti are valuable per tonne, Fe is dirt cheap.” If you only process the first two, and dump the Fe, as waste (for the time being), the need for the full 110km haulage road is avoided. 50km of the haulage road provides access from the Stuart Highway to the mine, campsite, and processing plant, and also provides a route for the gas pipeline to that plant. The remaining 60km of the haulage road can be deferred.



5% of 120MT of V and Ti is "only" 6MT which should be easy to carry by road via the Stuart Highway to Darwin over several years.



23% of 120MT (about 28MT) of Fe could more easily be supplied by the Pilbara mines and railways. Or even Centrex Smile



Gas pipelines have no doubt tap-offs every so often, for maintenance reasons and for easy connection of future branches. A logical place for two of the tap-offs is on either side of where the main pipeline crosses the Stuart Highway. This is also about where the pipe and access road to Mount Peake would branch off. Is there any mains electricity here or anywhere?



Should further exploration find more deposits of Fe near Mount Peake, these figures can be recalculated. But do not count of this.



Although the road distance is greater, any railhead might be located at Tennant Creek (rather than near Illoquara) where there are already a few goods sidings. This would replace capital costs with greater operating costs. Tennant Creek is still 850km from Darwin East Arm port, a worthwhile rail haul. Has anyone thought of that? It is believed that the Stuart Highway is fully sealed, while https://www.street-directory.com.au shows some signs of curve improvements and re-gradings.



Tennant Creek is a proper town with a proper railway station, Illoquara is neither. There is probably existing road access from the Stuart Highway to that station, unlike Illoquara. Googlemap shows the railways; can someone check this. There may be other sites for a railhead where road and rail are close together. Road and rail intersect at a bridge at Davenport, NT, in the middle of nowhere. This maybe a good site for a railhead. A loop siding, or a dead end siding for top-and-tailed trains, are needed, Is it OK for iron ore trucks to travel on part of the Stuart Highway? Would road improvements such as extra overtaking lanes might be needed in the loaded direction.



The more that one looks into this matter, the less likely a haulage road becomes. TNG is only a giant for its V and Ti; for its Fe it only a minnow.


See https://www.sa-trackandsignal.net/Pdf%20files/SACountry/GW1819.pdf

One piece of good news. The ore unloader, conveyor belts and stockpile at Berrimah (Darwin East nArm) already exist and seem to have spare capacity.

See https://www.tngltd.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/TNG-Fact-Sheet-28-Feb-2021.pdf Fact Sheet.

Edited 3 times.
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Interesting
  GT46C-ACe Deputy Commissioner

Location: Gold Coast QLD
Forget rail, for the quantities and costs it'll be something like a 4 trailer semi heading to Darwin a couple times a week. The Stuart is an autobahn compared to other roads in the Territory like the Tablelands or Capricorn Hwys. McArthur River ships it's product out via the Capricorn to Bing Bong and my god is that road describable as just an idea of a road yet 3 trailer semis hammer along it.

Rail is simply not an option for the infrastructure required. (Posted by a driller at a site across the road from McArthur....)

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