In the process of exploring gold together, we uncovered the often unappreciated precious metals royalty and streaming business model. It was found that these types of companies benefit from several important advantages, such as precious metals optionality with a perpetual discovery option, high margins with a free cash-flow business, and limited exposure to operating costs and geopolitical risks. These business benefits taken together allow for royalty and streaming companies to scale easily, build diversified commodities and mine portfolios, pay dividends to investors, and maintain a level of bear-market resistance. In addition, it has been shown that royalty and streaming companies are able to provide more upside than gold ETFs with less risk than miners.
Previously this series focused on large-cap gold royalties and streaming company Franco-Nevada. Now, we’re digging into Sandstorm Gold‘s operations and will be following-up with regional-specific posts to gather a complete understanding of Sandstorm Gold’s commodity and country risks. This blog is the 12th in the series and will focus on Sandstorm Gold’s producing assets… the goodies that pay the bills. For those interested, here are the other articles that led us to where we are today:
- A Brief History Of Gold
- Interesting Facts About Gold
- What Are Gold Royalties & Streaming Companies?
- Advantages of Gold Royalties & Streaming
- Franco-Nevada: More Than Gold
- Franco-Nevada: Canada
- Franco-Nevada: United States
- Franco-Nevada: Central & South America
- Franco-Nevada: Africa & Southeast Europe
- Franco-Nevada: Australia
- Sandstorm Gold: Mining-Focused VC
Sandstorm Gold – Producing Assets Deep Dive
These assets are the meat and potatoes of the Sandstorm Gold portfolio. As such, I’ve included most of the data found in the most recent Asset Handbook, including agreement type, commodity mined, operator, country of origin, and other details such as 2018 production.
- Canada: gold, silver, copper, zinc, diamonds, coal, lead, uranium, molybdenum, cobalt, lithium
- United States: gold, silver, copper, molybdenum
- Black Fox (Au) – Stream – 8% of Au
- Operator: McEwen Mining
- The Black Fox Mine is located outside of Matheson, Ontario in the Timmins Gold District. Black Fox began operating as an open pit mine and transitioned to underground operations in 2011. Underground ore is extracted using a combination of long hole stoping, cut and fill, and narrow vein mining methods. Ore is accessed from a series of declines branching off from the main ramp to surface. The underground mine at Black Fox begins at the bottom of the open pit approximately 200 metres below surface and is expected to extend to more than 800 metres in depth.
- Ore mined at Black Fox is transported to the Black Fox mill, located 28 km away, and is fed into a 2,400 tpd grinding circuit which includes a two stage closed circuit ball mill. Soluble gold is recovered by adsorption on activated carbon using carbon-in-column, carbon-in-leach, and carbon-in-pulp processes yielding recoveries of 90% to 95% on average.
- As of October 31, 2017 the Proven and Probable Mineral Reserves at the Black Fox underground was 113 kozs of gold contained in 0.4 Mt at a grade of 8.9 g/t (3.72 g/t cut-off ). The Measured and Indicated Resource at the Black Fox underground, as of March 31, 2018, was 576 kozs contained in 2.3 Mt at 7.9 g/t gold (3.0 g/t cut-off inclusive of Reserves).
- Bracemac-McLeod (Au, Ag, Cu, Zn) – Royalty – 3.0% NSR
- Operator: Glencore
- The Bracemac-McLeod mine is a high-grade volcanogenic massive sulphide (VMS) deposit located in the prolific mining district of Matagami, Québec. The Matagami district has seen mining activity for over fifty years and Bracemac-McLeod is the region’s twelfth operating mine. Bracemac-McLeod is a zinc-rich VMS deposit and also contains economic values of copper, silver and gold.
- Underground longhole mining operations began in May 2013 with transverse and longitudinal stoping methods used to access the orebodies. The mine operates at an average rate of 3,000 tpd and ore is transported to the Matagami Mill where it undergoes a flotation process to produce concentrates of zinc and copper. The Matagami mill has been in operation since 1963 and underwent an upgrade that was completed in 2007. Average recoveries at the mill are approximately 96% for zinc, 94% for copper, 60% for gold and 40% for silver. Copper concentrate from Bracemac-McLeod is sent to the Horne Smelter in Rouyn-Noranda, Québec and zinc concentrate to the Canadian Electrolytic Zinc Refinery in Valleyfield, Québec.
- As of December 31, 2017, the Proven and Probable Reserves at Bracemac-McLeod were 3.4 Mt at 6.7% zinc, 1.1% copper, 28.0 g/t silver and 0.6 g/t gold.
- Diavik (Diamonds) – Royalty – 1.0% GPR
- Operator: Rio Tinto
- The Diavik mine is Canada’s largest diamond mine, located on a 20 km2 island in Lac de Gras, Northwest Territories, approximately 300 km from Yellowknife. Access to the mine is by air year-round and by a 425 km ice road in winter that operates for eight to ten weeks between January and March. Four diamond bearing kimberlite pipes are located just off the eastern shore of the island and although the pipes are relatively small, each having surface expressions less than 200 metres in diameter, they are high grade making Diavik one of the most profitable diamond mines in the world. The majority of Diavik’s products are gem-quality white stones, which are sold to select diamantaires.
- Diavik began extracting diamonds in January 2003 and has since produced more than 120 million carats of high quality rough diamonds from the A154 South, A154 North and A418 pipes. Open pit mining from the three pipes has concluded and the ore bodies are currently being mined from underground. Rio Tinto announced the opening of a fourth pipe (A21) in the third quarter of 2018 and the current mine plan has production continuing until 2025. The Proven and Probable Mineral Reserve at Diavik consists of 15.1 Mt at 2.8 cpt for a total of 42.5 million carats as of Dec. 31, 2017 (1 mm cut-off ).
- In 2018, Rio Tinto revealed three of the finest rough diamonds from Diavik. The diamonds are collectively known as The Diavik Stars of the Arctic and include a 177.7 carat diamond, one of the largest and most valuable gem quality rough diamonds ever produced in Canada.
- Emigrant (Au) – Royalty – 1.5% NSR
- Operator: Newmont Mining
- The Emigrant mine is located at the south end of the Carlin Trend, a major regional gold belt in Nevada, U.S.A. Emigrant is an open pit, heap leach operation that reached commercial production during the third quarter of 2012. The mine is expected to produce 90,000 to 100,000 ounces of gold per year for approximately 10 years with additional years of heap leach processing beyond that. Prior to initiating production, Newmont reported Emigrant reserves of 1.6 million ounces of gold (tonnage and grade were not reported).
- During the last quarter of 2017, Sandstorm received an update to the life of mine production plan from Newmont. The updated production plan reduced the ounces expected to be produced from the areas of the mine subject to Sandstorm’s royalty.
- Ming (Au, Cu) – Gold Stream – 25%-32%
- Operator: Rambler Metals & Mining
- Ming is a copper-gold massive sulfide deposit located in northwestern Newfoundland in a region that has a strong history of gold, base metal and industrial minerals mining. The two dominant types of mineralization at Ming are stratiform volcanogenic massive sulphide (Ming Massive Sulphide) and disseminated sulphide stringers (Lower Footwall Zone).
- Production began in late 2011 and Rambler produced approximately 15 kozs of gold in five months from a high-grade gold area, known as the 1806 Zone. This early production from the gold zone allowed Rambler to generate revenue while the company constructed a copper flotation circuit at the Nugget Pond Mill approximately 40 km from the Ming mine. The processing facility includes a conventional crushing, grinding and flotation process that has been in commercial production since the second quarter of 2013. Recoveries range between 94% and 96% for copper and 65% to 70% for gold.
- Rambler expanded the mill throughput capacity to 1,250 tpd in 2017 and the current mine plan from the June 2015 Pre-Feasibility Study has production continuing through 2036. The Proven and Probable Reserves (diluted and recovered) as of January 2018 are 8.7 Mt of ore containing 1.71% copper and 0.4 g/t gold (1.0% CuEq cut-off ).
- Moroy / Bachelor (Au) – Royalty, Gold Stream – 1.0% NSR (from two purchases each at 0.5%) and 20% of Au, respectively
- Operator: Bonterra Resources
- Moroy and Bachelor are greenstone hosted, structurally controlled alkalic-magmatic gold deposits located outside of Val d’Or, Québec. The property was host to a producing mine during the 1980’s and in 2004 underwent major upgrades to the existing mine and mill infrastructure including the installation of a carbon-in-pulp process plant.
- The Bachelor mine reached commercial production in 2013 as a long-hole underground operation and the mined ore is processed at the Urban-Barry mill. The mill has a capacity of 800 tpd and has produced more than 210,000 ozs of gold since its commissioning. Gold recoveries have averaged between 96% and 98%.
- The Moroy deposit is sub-parallel and south of the Bachelor deposit, dipping north towards the Bachelor trend. Development and drill programs are underway with more than 65,000 metres of surface and underground drilling completed to date. A mineral resource estimate for Moroy is expected to be released during 2019.
- Bonterra plans to expand the Urban-Barry mill to increase its processing capacity to 2,400 tpd in order to accommodate ore from Moroy, Bachelor and Bonterra’s nearby Barry and Gladiator deposits. Moroy is expected to contribute 500 tpd of mill feed at an average grade of 6.0 g/t gold for annual production of about 34,000 ounces of gold.
- San Andres (Au) – Royalty – 1.5% NSR
- Operator: Aura Minerals
- San Andres is located in La Únion, Honduras and is an open pit, heap leach operation with a two-stage crushing circuit consisting of a primary jaw crusher and secondary cone crusher. The epithermal deposit contains gold occurring in colloform banded quartz veins.
- The mine has a long history going back to the 1500’s during the Colonial period when it was the principal source of Honduran gold for the Spanish Crown. San Andres has been in modern production since 1983 and has well-developed infrastructure which includes a power and water supply, warehouses, maintenance facilities, an assay laboratory and an on-site camp.
- Aura Minerals acquired the mine in 2009 and completed an expansion project consisting of new crusher-conveyor and stacking systems. This reduced ore haulage distances and increased throughput. The mine produced 82.3 kozs of gold in 2017 with recoveries averaging 97%. The Proven and Probable Reserves as of Dec. 2017 contained 1.1 Mozs of gold contained in 67.77 Mt of oxide and mixed material with an average grade of 0.50 g/t gold. The cut-off grades were 0.28 g/t gold for oxides and 0.37 g/t for mixed.
- Santa Elena (Au, Ag) – Stream – 20% of Au
- Operator: First Majestic Silver
- The Santa Elena Mine is located in northern Mexico approximately 150 km northeast of Hermosillo in Sonora State. The mineralization at Santa Elena is classified as a low sulphidation epithermal system and mining and exploration has been focused on a single wide vein. The mine began operating in 2011 as an open pit, heap leach operation and transitioned to an underground mine and mill in early 2014. First Majestic is currently mining from three stopes, targeting underground production of 1,750 tpd.
- Ore is processed into gold-silver doré bars through a Merrill-Crowe processing facility with capacity of 3,000 tpd and recoveries have averaged 90% during 2017. Excess capacity at the mill is being used to reprocess ore from the heap leach pads. Production during 2017 totaled 2,282,182 ounces of silver and 49,211 ounces of gold.
- The Proven and Probable Mineral Reserves as of December 2017 were 5.2 Mt at 84.0 g/t silver and 1.3 g/t gold for contained ounces of 30.7 Mozs of silver equivalent (130-135 g/t AgEq cut-off ). Santa Elena has Measured and Indicated Mineral Resources of 4.6 Mt at 106.0 g/t silver and 1.6 g/t gold for 34.4 Mozs of silver equivalent (120-125 g/t AgEq cut-off for underground ore and 75 g/t AgEq cut-off for leach pad ore).
- Sheerness (Coal) – Royalty – 5.0% GRR
- Operator: Westmoreland Coal Company
- The Sheerness mine is located in South Central Alberta about 160 km northeast of Calgary. Average annual production is 3.3 million tonnes of coal, mined using two draglines and then hauled directly from the mine to the Sheerness Generating Station, owned by TransAlta Utilities and ATCO Power. Sheerness has supplied coal to this station since 1984 and the current supply contract expires in 2026.
- The sub-bituminous coal is located within the lowermost strata of the Upper Cretaceous Paskapoo Formation and exploration on adjacent properties is underway to extend the life of the mine. The current mine life is expected to extend production through 2040.
- The Sheerness NSR was acquired as part of a package of 52 royalties purchased from Teck Resources in January 2016.
- Thunder Creek and 144 Zone (Au) – Royalty – 1.0% NSR
- Operator: Tahoe Resources
- The Thunder Creek and 144 properties are part of the Timmins West mine complex in Ontario. The deposits all occur along the 144 Trend, a broad structural corridor that is host to extensive gold mineralization. The gold occurs in steep north-northwest plunging zones within and proximal to the 144 Trend and related structures.
- Thunder Creek is an underground mine that has been in production since 2010 and has produced more than 500 kozs of gold. Primary mining methods include longitudinal and transverse longhole stoping and ore is hoisted to surface via a shaft and trucked to the Bell Creek mill for processing. Ore is processed with single-stage crushing and grinding with a portion of the gold recovered by gravity methods, followed by pre-oxidation and cyanidation with carbon-in-leach and carbon-in-pulp recovery. The Probable Reserves at Thunder Creek as of Jan. 2018 totaled 0.47 Mt at 2.9 g/t gold (2.0 g/t cut-off ).
- Drilling activity at the 144 project led to the discovery of two significant zones of gold mineralization about 750 metres to the southwest of Thunder Creek, the 144 Gap Zone and the 144 Gap SW Zone. The Proven and Probable Reserves as of Jan. 2018 at 144 Gap are 5.01 Mt grading 3.15 g/t for 496 kozs of gold (2.0 g/t cut-off ).
- Triangle Zone (Au) – Royalty – 2.0% NSR
- Operator: Eldorado Gold Corp
- The Triangle Zone is located within the Lamaque project in the prolific Val d’Or mining district of Québec. The property is located 2.5 km south of the past producing Lamaque and Sigma Mines, which together produced more than 10 Mozs of gold.
- Triangle is an Archean greenstone-hosted orogenic lode gold deposit. Gold is found within quartz-tourmaline-carbonate veins, which are hosted within a series of subparallel sub-vertical shear zones centered around a steeply plunging cylinder-shaped porphyritic diorite. Individual gold bearing vein zones and associated alteration are 4 to 5 metres thick on average and extend 500 to 700 metres horizontally and vertically. To date, seven structures have been identified by drilling from surface to around 1,000 metres vertical depth.
- As of Dec. 31, 2017, the Proven and Probable Mineral Reserve at the Triangle deposit was 893 kozs of gold contained in 3.8 Mt at a grade of 7.3 g/t (3.5 g/t cut-off ) and the Measured and Indicated Resource was 1.1 Mozs contained in 3.7 Mt at 8.9 g/t gold. The Inferred Resource totals 1.1 Moz in 4.7 Mt at a grade of 7.42 g/t (2.5 g/t cut-off inclusive of Reserves).
- Eldorado has begun mining and processing ore from the Triangle Zone and expects to reach commercial production during 2019. The Sandstorm royalty covers a portion of the Triangle reserves and resources.
- Argentina: gold, silver, copper, molybdenum
- Brazil: gold, silver, copper
- Chile: gold
- Ecuador: gold, silver
- French Guiana: gold
- Honduras: gold, nickel
- Mexico: gold, silver
- Paraguay: titanium
- Peru: gold
- Suriname: gold
- Cerro Moro (Au, Ag) – Stream, Spot payment – 20% of Ag (until 7.0Mozs are delivered, then 9% of Ag for life) and 30% of spot ongoing payment, respectively
- Operator: Yamana Gold
- The Cerro Moro low sulfidation, silver-gold deposit is located within the Deseado Massif approximately 70 km southwest of the coastal port city of Puerto Deseado in the Santa Cruz province of Argentina. Cerro Moro contains a number of high grade epithermal gold and silver deposits, some of which will be mined via open pit and some via underground mining methods. The plant has the capacity to process 1,000 tpd and consists of a crushing, grinding and flotation circuit with a counter current decantation and a Merrill Crowe circuit included. Metallurgical recoveries are expected to average 95% for gold and 93% for silver.
- The Probable Reserve estimate as of December 2017 was 1.95 Mt with an average grade of 648.3 g/t silver (20.8 oz/t) and 11.4 g/t gold (1.0 g/t AuEq cut-off). Yamana is targeting the addition of 1.0 million gold equivalent ounces to the mineral inventory over the coming years.
- Yamana announced that the project had achieved commercial production at the end of the second quarter of 2018 and approximately 6,000,000 ounces of silver and 125,000 ounces of gold are expected to be produced during the 2019 year. Sandstorm will begin to purchase silver ounces from Cerro Moro in January 2019 and in the interim is receiving silver ounces from Yamana’s Minera Florida and Chapada mines, up to a maximum of 300,000 ounces of silver for the year.
- Chapada (Au, Ag, Cu) – Stream, Spot payment – 4.2% of Cu, 5.2% of Ag, and 30% of spot ongoing payment on both Cu and Ag
- Operator: Yamana Gold
- Chapada is an open pit copper-gold mine located 270 km northwest of Brasília in Goiás state, Brazil. The mine reached commercial production in 2007 and is an open pit truck and shovel operation, with ore being treated through a flotation plant with capacity of 22 Mt per annum. The Chapada mine plan has three open pit mining areas including Corpo and Corpo Sul, which are currently being mined, and the Suruca deposit that Yamana plans to develop in the future. Exploration is ongoing to develop near mine targets at Suruca SW, Suruca NE, Baru and Interpits.
- Chapada produced approximately 127 million pounds of copper as well as 120,000 ounces of gold and 253,000 ounces of silver during 2017. Recoveries averaged 80% for copper and 55% for gold. The Proven and Probable Reserves at Chapada total 621.8 Mt at a grade of 0.25% containing 3.5 billion pounds of copper (0.21 – 0.3 g/t AuEq cut-off ). The technical report released in early 2018 outlined a life of mine plan for 29 years of copper and gold production.
- Yamana completed studies to evaluate several development opportunities at Chapada during 2018. These opportunities range in scope from plant optimization initiatives to enhance copper and gold recoveries, to a plant expansion to bring forward cash flows and pit wall pushbacks to expose higher grade ore zones. Based on the results from the studies, Yamana is progressing the opportunities to the next stage of evaluation and development.
- The studies on expanding the Chapada processing plant capacity up to 32 Mt per annum have concluded that higher throughput can be achieved with the installation of new equipment. A Feasibility Study has been initiated for the plant expansion and is expected to be completed in early 2019.
- Don Nicolas (Au, Ag) – Royalty – $3/oz on Au (capped at $2m)
- Operator: Compania Inversora en Minas (CIMINAS)
- The Don Nicolás project is located in Santa Cruz, Argentina within the Deseado Massif geological setting. The gold and silver at Don Nicolás occurs as low sulphidation, epithermal mineralization within subvertically oriented quartz-breccia veins.
- A Feasibility Study was completed in 2012 by Mineral IRL Limited evaluating an open pit mine with ore production from two districts, Martinetas and La Paloma, located approximately 50 kilometres apart. A private Argentinian company Compañía Inversora en Minas (CIMINAS) acquired the project from Mineral IRL in 2014 and began developing the mine. CIMINAS has constructed a processing facility with a two-stage crushing circuit and carbon-in leach treatment plant with capacity to process 1,000 tpd. The first gold doré bar was poured from the Martinetas district wat Don Nicolás in September 2017 and CIMINAS is expecting to produce approximately 35,000 ounces per year over 8 years with ore sourced from the Martinetas and La Paloma deposits. Metallurgical recoveries are expected to average 90%.
- Upside opportunities for the project include underground development of the deeper high-grade shoots at Sulfuro on the La Paloma property, and heap leach recovery of lower-grade material around the Martinetas area where a portion of the mineral resource is based.
- Sandstorm’s royalty is capped at $2 million and covers a portion of the Don Nicolás property claims. Sandstorm acquired the royalty as part of its acquisition of Premier Royalty Inc. in 2013.
- Gualcamayo (Au) – Royalty – 1.0% NSR
- Operator: Mineros, S.A.
- The Gualcamayo mine is an open pit and underground heap leach operation that reached commercial production in 2009. Gualcamayo consists of three substantial zones of gold mineralization called Quebrada del Diablo (QDD), Amelia Ines-Magdalena (AIM) and QDD Lower West. QDD is a sediment-hosted disseminated gold deposit while AIM is a sulphide-bearing skarn deposit containing copper, zinc and molybdenum with gold-arsenic mineralization. Porphyry style molybdenum mineralization also occurs at the project.
- The process facility at Gualcamayo is designed to treat 24,000 tpd and includes a primary, secondary and tertiary crushing circuit. Gold recovery of approximately 60% is achieved with heap leaching and activated carbon in an ADR plant where gold doré is produced and sent to a refinery. The December 2017 Proven and Probable Reserves at Gualcamayo contain 491 kozs of gold in 10.25 Mt at a grade of 1.5 g/t (variable cut-off grades).
- Botswana: gold, copper, nickel, zinc, iron ore, cobalt
- Burkina Faso: gold
- Cote d’Ivoire: gold
- Egypt: gold
- Ghana: gold
- South Africa: gold, uranium
- Hounde (Au) – Royalty – 2.0% NSR
- Operator: Endeavor Mining Corp
- The Houndé project is located 250 km southwest of Ouagadougou, the capital city of Burkina Faso. Infrastructure in the area includes a paved highway approximately 2.7 km from the mine site, a 225 kV power line as close as 200 metres in some areas and a rail line that extends to the port of Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire approximately 25 km west of the deposit area.
- The mine reached commercial production in November 2017 and Houndé is now Endeavour’s flagship asset, ranking amongst West Africa’s top tier cash generating mines. The average annual production during the first four years of operations is expected to be 235,000 ounces of gold at an all-insustaining-cost of US$610 per ounce. Houndé is an open-pit mine with a 3.0 Mt per year gravity circuit and carbon-in-leach plant. Gold recoveries are expected to average 93%.
- The mineralization at Houndé is within the highly prospective Birimian Greenstone belt and is mainly quartz stockwork-style and is moderately pyritic. The Vindaloo trend, where the bulk of the Mineral Reserves have been identified, has been drill tested for a distance of approximately 7.7 km along strike and up to 350 metres in depth. The mineralization remains open both along strike and to depth and Endeavour has set an exploration budget of $40 million to be spent over the next four years.
- Proven and Probable Reserves as of December 2017 totaled 30.2 Mt at a gold grade of 2.0 g/t for 2.0 million contained ounces (0.5 g/t cut-off ).
- Karma (Au) – Stream – 25kozs over 5yrs, then 1.6% for life with ongoing spot payment of 20%
- Operator: Endeavor Mining Corp
- Karma is a mesothermal, shear-hosted gold deposit. The soft nature of the open pit material allows the majority of the ore and waste to be excavated without blasting, making it a low cost operation. Production began in early 2016 from five open pits and ore is processed with heap leaching. Recoveries are averaging between 85% and 90% and gold production from Karma totaled 98 kozs during 2017.
- Karma hosts a target-rich landscape with the essential hallmarks of a multi-deposit environment. The property consists of six contiguous exploration permits (Goulagou, Rambo, Kao, Rounga, Youba, and Tougou) totaling more than 900 km2 and includes more than 45 high-priority targets with high-grade rock values associated with gold-in-soil anomalies and historical workings that remain untested.
- The Proven and Probable Reserves as of Dec. 2017 totaled 34.6 Mt of 0.9 g/t material for 1.0 Mozs of contained gold (cut-off grades are 0.2 – 0.5 g/t depending on oxide, transition and sulphide material).
- MWS (Au, Uranium) – Royalty – 1.0% NSR
- Operator: AngloGold Ashanti
- The Mine Waste Solutions (MWS) project is located near Stilfontein, South Africa within the Witwatersrand Basin. MWS is a gold and uranium tailings reprocessing operation that processes slurry material, reclaimed hydraulically from various tailings storage facilities through three processing plants. The gold plants have the capacity to treat approximately 26 Mt per annum and the uranium plant has a design capacity of 1.2 Mt per year.
- The gold and uranium in the tailings at MWS occurred within conglomerate reefs that were mined at the now closed Stilfontein and Buffelsfontein gold mines. The facilities also include a modern tailings storage facility approximately 15 km from the gold plant modules where residues from the treatment plants are deposited.
Asia, Australia and Europe
- Australia: nickel, gold, uranium
- Mongolia: gold, silver, copper, molybdenum, zinc, lead
- Sweden: graphite
- Turkey: gold, silver, copper, zinc, lead
- Altintepe (Au, Ag) – Royalty – 1.5% NSR
- Operator: Bahar Madencilik Sanayi ve Ticaret
- Altintepe is located in the Ordu province of Turkey and is a high-sulphidation epithermal gold deposit. Mineralization occurs in a series of linear, fault-controlled veins and related stockworks.
- The open-pit heap leach operation at Altintepe poured gold for the first time in late 2015. Production from the first stage of operations is expected to average 30,000 ounces of gold per year over a 40 month period. Other mineralized zones that may increase the mine life include Kayatepe, Camlik East, Extension Ridge, and Karakışla.
- Forrestania (Ni) – Royalty 0 1.0% NSR
- Operator: Western Areas Ltd.
- The Forrestania project is Western Areas’ flagship asset and contains two of the highest grade operating nickel mines in the world, Flying Fox and Spotted Quoll. The high grade nickel ore is processed through the Cosmic Boy Concentrator which consists of a three stage crushing circuit followed by a single closed circuit ball mill and a system of flotation tanks and thickening/ filtration system. Nickel recovery rates at Cosmic Boy average between 85% and 90%. Forrestania also includes a significant regional tenement package, considered highly prospective for further nickel discoveries.
- Sandstorm’s royalty covers approximately 42 km2 of the Forrestania property including a portion of the Flying Fox mine. Production at Flying Fox commenced in 2006 and is an underground, long-hole stoping operation with low cash costs at under $3.00 per pound of nickel. The Flying Fox mineralization extends from 250 metres to 1.2 km below the surface and includes discrete independent orebodies with high grade massive sulphide as well as a large volume of low grade disseminated mineralization. Resource grades range from 3.9% to 6.2% nickel and increase at depth.
- The June 2018 Probable Reserves at Flying Fox totaled 0.8 Mt at a grade of 3.9% for 29,170 tonnes of nickel. The Indicated Mineral Resource was 1.5 Mt at a grade of 5.3% nickel for 80,611 tonnes of nickel.
Check in next time when we dig into Sandstorm Gold’s development projects, exploration projects, and royalty purchase rights.
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