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Abu Dabbab Alluvial Tin

During the early 1970s a joint Egyptian‐Soviet expedition explored and evaluated two placer tin deposits at Abu Dabbab. The placers are known as Wadi Mubarak and Wadi Quaria and are located adjacent to the large Abu Dabbab tantalum-tin deposit.  The sampling data produced by the Soviets was re‐evaluated and a new resource estimation completed by Gippsland in 2008 identified an Inferred Resource containing 759t of tin metal.

Placer Overburden (m 3) Mineralised layer (m 3) Cassiterite Tin (t)

Mubarak

146,290

175,120

247.6

193.5

Quaria

293,630

262,770

724.0

566

Totals

439,920

437,890

971.6

759

 

In April 2011 a programme of trial mining of the alluvial material and on‐site processing using a HPC‐15 alluvial separator commenced with bulk sample feed being mined by excavator from selected profiles representing the range of alluvial material and cassiterite grades expected to be encountered during full scale mining.  The trial mining focussed on characterising the placer deposit material to determine metallurgical behaviour and to confirm the cassiterite content of the deposit, cassiterite content of the waste material and the mineralogy of the cassiterite in the concentrate and tailings.

Following the completion of a comprehensive engineering study and economic evaluation of the Abu Dabbab alluvial tin deposits and the sufficiently robust results of the trial mining, the Directors formally approved implementation of the Abu Dabbab Alluvial Project which commenced in March 2012. Recovery of the cassiterite was achieved using two HPC-30 alluvial separators.

In February 2013 a spiral module was commissioned in order to increase the production rate of cassiterite. The spiral plant is intended to treat approximately 30 tonnes per hour of -2 mm dry feed derived from ROM mining and ROM screening operations and to retreat approximately 20 tonnes per hour of accumulated tailings from the previous operations of the HPC-30 circuit.

The nominal capacity of the spiral plant is 50 tonnes per hour or 30,000 tonnes per month at around 85% availability. At an average feed grade of -2 mm feedstock around 1.8 to 2 kg tin per tonne and at 90% recovery, the plant is expected to produce between 50 to 55 tonnes of tin contained in concentrate per month. A further increase in production by between 20 to 25 tonnes of tin in concentrate per month is anticipated when a circuit to process -4+2 mm material begins operation.

Location Plan of Abu Dabbab tin placer deposits

Digging grade control pits

Marking out mining blocks

Mined ore blocks

 

View of screening & processing plant

Spiral module

Cassiterite concentrate being loaded for export

Coarse grained cassiterite