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Mineral Deposits extends heavy mineral sands project life by 7 years

Mineral Deposits Ltd. said Feb. 19 that an updated mineral resource and ore reserve for the Grande Côte heavy mineral sands project extended the mine life by seven years to 2050.

The company owns 50% of TiZir Ltd., which in turn owns 90% of Grand Côte, which now has a mine life of 33 years.

Ore reserves in the proven and probable categories now stand at 1.8 million tonnes containing 24.7 million tonnes of heavy minerals grading 1.4%, using a 1.3% cut-off for the first five years and 1.0% cut-off afterward. The heavy minerals component consists of 72% ilmenite, 10.7% zircon, 3.2% leucoxene and 2.5% rutile.

Mineral resources now stand at 1.8 million tonnes containing 26.2 million tonnes of in situ heavy minerals grading 1.4% in the measured and indicated, and 1.2% in the inferred category at a 1.0% heavy minerals cutoff.

The company said the updated resource estimates took into account the depletion of the 2016 resource estimate by 46.8 million tonnes of material containing about 800,000 tonnes of in situ heavy minerals mined in 2017.

Meanwhile, an optimization change, including the path geometry, path location and pond floor smoothing, resulted in an ore reserve increase of 3.8 million tonnes of heavy minerals before accounting for mining depletion in 2017.