High-grade Australian gold producer Pantoro (PNR) announced this week that its one million tonnes per annum processing plant at Norseman Gold Project had reached practical completion, with ore commissioning of the plant now underway. Contractor GR Engineering was pleased to announce that the project was completed on time and on budget. 

PNR acquired 50% of the Norseman Gold Project, located in WA’s eastern goldfields 200 km south of Kalgoorlie, in 2019 and manages the unincorporated joint venture, including day to day operational management. The project holds 4.8 million ounces of gold with an ore reserve of 973,000 ounces and is comprised of pre-1994 ‘near-continguous mining tenements including 800 km2 of Norseman-Wiluna highly prospective greenstone belt’. Six mining areas were initially planned for the project, either underground or open pit. The mines have produced over 5.5m ounces of gold since first opening in 1935.  

Production is planned to begin in the third quarter of this year. 

The Scotia Mining Centre, delivering a 776% upgrade in underground or reserves in April this year, and OK Underground Mine activities continue with ‘around 140,000 tonnes available for milling’. 

Managing Director of PNR, Paul Cmrlec commended GR Engineering’s outstanding performance in delivering the project on budget and on time, ‘considering the recent cost increases and delays experienced across the wider industry’. He also thanked and congratulated the team at Pantoro for their substantial efforts to stay on track and hit the objective.”

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The completion of the processing plant comes on the back of pleasing drilling results at PNR’s Lamboo PGE project. PGE stands for platinum group metals that include platinum, palladium, rhodium, ruthenium, iridium, and osmium. The Edison Zone returned strong PGE results with nickel, cobalt, rhodium and iridium also present. The drilling programme, which began in April 2022, is ongoing, with confirmed ‘large ore widths and consistent grades over long distances.’

Pantoro also own and operate the Halls Creek Project in WA, which they developed to first gold pour in 2015. The project consists of ‘underground and open pit mining, and a modern CIP processing facility’. 

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Author – Troy Adams, Global Road Technology