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Assmang Manganese Mines, South Africa

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Assmang Manganese Mines, South Africa

Assmang Manganese Mines, South Africa

The Kalahari Manganese Field located Northern Cape Province 700km southwest Johannesburg contains around 80% world's known high-grade manganese reserves. district yields 4Mt/y mined mainly Samancor Assmang.

Originally established 1935 jointly owned managed African Rainbow Minerals Assore Assmang wholly owns mines community Rock. Assmang commissioned Nchwaning 1972 Gloria mine south started production 1978. nominally rated treat 1Mt/y ore.

"Assmang announced capital expenditure programme R748m double manganese production 2010."

Early 2000 Assmang announced expansion involving development shaft complex Nchwaning 2Mt/y run-of-mine capacity Nchwaning world’s lowest-cost underground manganese mine extend its lifetime 30 years.

The expansion including additional treatment capacity commissioned 2004 completed 2005 capitalised cost R780m. Assmang operates eight-hour shifts per Monday Friday single shift Saturday employing total 2,510 its various operations.

Assmang announced recently capital expenditure programme R748m double manganese production 2010. Assmang mines 1.5 million tons manganese Nchwaning Gloria mines region.

The company produces manganese alloys its Cato Ridge works KwaZulu Natal. Assmang currently produces 200,000 tons manganese alloys per year. Recently company manganese alloy mine.

GEOLOGY RESERVES

The Kalahari Manganese lies within structural basin extends approximately 40km 5km 15km west dipping gently northwest. Rock northern basin Transvaal System rocks lie 300m surface beneath Kalahari Formation sands calcretes Karroo System tillites Waterberg System shales quartzites.

sub-horizontal stratabound manganese horizons occur banded ironstone Voëlwater Formation sequence Transvaal System rocks. being faulted horizons folded.

The massive averages 48% manganese; Nchwaning particularly phosphorus Gloria higher manganese-to-iron ratio. 2006 Assmang's reserves totalled 192Mt resources 428.4Mt.

At 2006 Assmang's reserves totalled 192Mt resources 428.4Mt.

MINING

Both mines underground operations using room-and-pillar method. Nchwaning started vertical hoisting shaft 450m-deep No.2 vertical skip shaft added upgraded 1981. Gloria combined vertical shaft personnel materials hoisting incline shaft vehicle access conveyor hoisting crushing screening washing plant.

The expansion follows design having 2,200m-long incline shaft 500m-deep Nchwaning No.3 personnel shaft. ventilation shaft workshop located 400 level.

Bolted development entries access rooms 7m 8m wide 3.2m 3.5m high pillars normally 8m x 8m. Low-grade floor roof rooms.

established areas Boart Longyear hydraulic drilling rigs Wagner Load-Haul-Dump (LHD) machines trucks transport storage silos primary screens feed hoisting systems. Roofs scaled using modified three-wheeled loader.

For area Assmang requested three-boom rig fitted drills plus roof-bolting mine drill holes roof bolts face-blast holes set-up. Atlas Copco supplied purpose-designed Rocket Boomer M3D rigs.

Assmang added its fleet Atlas Copco Wagner LHDs opted alternative truck brand ordering Caterpillar AD 30 machines.

PROCESSING PRODUCTION

"Assmang produced 2.5Mt manganese 2006 not including sales Cato Ridge."

A shaft complex Nchwaning No.3 recently completed provide access quality decades come. Production complex commenced 2004 became fully operational February 2006. operation serviced shafts; vertical personnel shaft depth 350m decline shaft equipped conveyors hoisting shaft. Hoisting capacity +/- 200,000 tons per month.

The existing upgraded treats Nchwaning No.2 No.3 mines. run-of-mine crushed washed screened processing needed. passed plants stacked according grade. capacities stacks vary 280t 320t each numbered sampled.

In total Assmang produced 2.5Mt manganese 2006 financial year not including sales Cato Ridge. Exports African Railways route Elizabeth Indian Ocean. Lesser tonnages directed domestic steel industry.

THE FUTURE

Assmang process R748 million capital expenditure programme double its manganese output 2010. Manganese prices expected firm due shortage 1 million tons manganese supplied into market 2008. largely slowed growth supply high-grade manganese India’s transition exporter importer manganese ore.

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