Productivity Considerations for Shovels and Excavators
Better technology and more power make.....read more

Canadian Mining: A Crowded House
Although consolidation has chipped away.....read more

Technical Factors for Selecting Optimum Heap Leach Pad Sites
Selection of a pad site can have significant, long-lasting effects.....read more

Partnership at Pyhäsalmi
Haulage is one key focus for partners......read more.

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Countries Boldly Stake Claims for Arctic Mineral Wealth - During the summer of 2007 (in the northern hemisphere), several countries began to plan for the future as the warmer temperatures reveal potential mineral wealth and new navigation routes above the Arctic Circle. This summer will probably be logged as the warmest yet and some researchers believe the arctic could be ice free by 2040. The thoughts of rising sea levels and receding glaciers are grim, but countries bordering arctic regions are acting quickly to protect mineral wealth and establish economic control.
Researchers from the U.S. are currently mapping the sea floor north of Alaska. They believed that a submerged plateau called the Chukchi Cap may contain vast oil and natural gas resources. The sea floor mapping exercise was prompted by the fact that Russia ........ read more

                                          Steve Fiscor, Editor in Chief


07 Vol 6 - CONTENTS

The Aluminium Crucible...

Xstrata Bids $1 billion...

Lundin Mining Strategy...

Newmont Sheds its Gold...

Agnico-Eagle Moves Ahead...

Toshiba Tunes In...

US & Canada

Latin America





'This month in coal'
Suppliers Reports & Equipment Gallery

Conferences and Exhibitions
Who's moving where!


Euro Machinery


The Aluminum Crucible Continues to Roil - The global aluminum industry’s consolidation and expansion activity has thrown off a steady stream of mega money deals and project development announcements. Rio Tinto’s agreed acquisition of Alcan, announced July 12, 2007, appears to be on track for a successful conclusion, and several very large, early-stage alumina refinery and aluminum smelter projects moved closer to realization in the mid-July to mid- August period......... read more

Xstrata Bids $1Billion for Eland Platinum - Xstrata Alloys and Eland Platinum in early August announced an agreed cash takeover of Eland Platinum by Xstrata valued at about $1 billion. Eland Platinum’s primary asset is its 65% interest in the Elandsfontein project on the western limb of the Bushveld igneous complex in South Africa. Xstrata Alloys, a business unit of Xstrata PLC, is headquartered in Rustenburg, South Africa, and is one of South Africa’s largest producers of ferrochrome and vanadium....... read more

Lundin Mining Strategy on Track - In the past three months the Canada and Sweden-based Lundin Mining group has effectively completed the major planned acquisitions.
On July 3, 2007, Lundin Mining and Tenke Mining Corp. finalized their business compilation, potentially the most substantial step to date in Lundin’s aggressive growth program. Tenke’s South American assets and $5 million have been conveyed to a new Torontolisted company called Suramina Resources Inc. Paul Conibear, Tenke’s president, will be president and CEO of Suramina and will join Lundin Mining as senior vice-president of projects .... read more



Newmont Sheds Its Gold Hedges - Newmont Mining Corp. announced early in July the elimination of its entire 1.85-million-oz gold hedge position, establishing the company as the world’s largest unhedged gold producer. Newmont also announced plans to monetize components of its royalty and equity portfolio over the next 12 months, resulting in the discontinuation of the company’s Merchant Banking Segment as a separate business unit....read more
Agnico-Eagle Moves Ahead with Pinos Altos - Canadian gold miner Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd. announced on August 9 that it had decided to formally begin development of its 100% owned Pinos Altos gold project in northern Mexico. The company also reported that, as a result of recent drilling at Pinos Altos, gold ounces in reserves increased 21% from the figure released in February 2007. The silver ounces in these reserves increased a further 18% over the same period.
AEM noted that current gold reserves at Pinos Altos total 2.2 million oz from 20 million mt of ore in probable reserves grading 3.5 g/mt, an increase of 13% in gold grade over the previous reserve estimate...... read more

Toshiba Tunes In on Kazakh Uranium Project - Toshiba Corp. said it would participate in the Kharassan uranium mines project, a new development project in southern Kazakhstan promoted by Kazatomprom (KAP), a Republic of Kazakhstan state-owned enterprise.
The Kharassan project is being promoted by two KAP-related companies, Kyzylkum LLP and Baiken-U LLP. Test excavation of uranium ore is due to start within the year, and output is expected to reach approximately 5,000 metric tons of uranium annually by 2014. Japanese companies have acquired indirect ownership ... read more



PotashCorp Spending $1.6B on New Brunswick Mine/Mill - Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan recently announced plans for a new 2-million-mt potash mine and expanded milling operations in New Brunswick, which will raise the company’s projected total annual potash capacity to 14.9 million mt by 2011. The four-year construction project will begin once necessary regulatory approvals are obtained and has an estimated cost of $1.6 billion, which includes $100 million for additional upgraded granular production capability..... read more
Diavik Diamond Production Exceeds Expectations - Diavik Diamond Mines Inc., operator of the Diavik diamond mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories, reported that approximately 3.3 million carats of diamonds were recovered from the mine during the second calendar quarter compared with around 2.7 million carats for the comparable period last year. Production for the first half of the calendar year was almost 5.9 million carats. This, according to the company, is well ahead of the current plan and principally the result of higher recovery of diamonds per metric ton of ore processed.... read more


Mt. Hope Moly to Expand Mill Throughput - Idaho General Mines announced plans to increase mill throughput capacity at its Mt. Hope molybdenum mine in eastern Nevada from 44,000 t/d to an average of approximately 60,000 t/d, with actual annual throughput dependant on ore characteristics and other factors. The increased throughput capacity is expected to expand average annual molybdenum production during the first 10 years of operations to 37 million lb from the company’s prior estimates of approximately 31 million lb.... read more




Pilot Mining at Bolivar Earns $10.3 Million for Dia Bras - Dia Bras Exploration announced that second quarter 2007 net estimated smelter production value from its Bolivar pilot-mining program in Chihuahua, Mexico, totaled $4.8 million for a cumulative amount of $10.3 million for the first six months of 2007 compared with $6.8 million and a cumulative $12.1 million for the same period in 2006.
During the quarter, the company processed 28,240 dry metric tons (dmt) of material averaging grades of 5.27% Zn and 1.13% Cu (cumulative production of 58,254 dmt for the first six months of 2007 at 6.04% Zn and 1.24% Cu) …… read more
Palmarejo Project Moves Ahead with Construction, Equipment Acquisition - In late July Palmarejo Silver and Gold Corp. issued an update on activities at its Palmarejo silver-gold project located in Chihuahua, Mexico. According to the company, progress at the project site included the arrival of mining shovels, trucks and drill rigs in Chihuahua; erection of carbonin- leach, intensive leach, solution and detox tanks; completion of cutting and flanging of mill sections; and completion of evaluation by engineering consultants Pells, Sullivan and Meynink of the mine’s waste rock dump…. read more


Apex Begins Silver Concentrate Production at San Cristobal - Apex Silver Mines announced on August 7 that production of silver-bearing concentrates at the San Cristobal zinc, lead and silver mine in southwestern Bolivia had begun. According to the company, the plant reached mechanical completion in late June 2007 and began start-up commissioning in early July. The first rail shipments from the plant were expected to take place a week after the August 7 announcement. Apex Silver said that, as of July 31, more than 3.5 million million mt of ore had been stockpiled for the concentrator…. read more


Fluor JV Wins BHP Billiton Iron Ore Expansion Job - Fluor Corp. announced that BHP Billiton has awarded the Mine & Port Development JV (MPDJV) a contract to provide engineering, procurement, construction management and commissioning services for an iron ore expansion project in Western Australia. Total project value is $1.8 billion and Fluor’s share of the EPCM contract is 50%. MPDJV is a 50:50 joint venture between Fluor Australia Pty Ltd. and Sinclair Knight Merz. The MPDJV office in Perth, Australia, will lead the project…. read more

Indonesia Will Put Mining Rights Out to Tender - The Indonesian government will use a tender process, rather than the existing direct appointment mechanism, to award the mining permits that will be issued under the proposed new mining law. The Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry’s director general of geology and mineral resources, Simon Sembiring, said during a seminar on July 18 that the government, based on the mining bill (currently still under deliberation in the House of Representatives), will in future put mining concessions out to tender. “You may submit your bids in line with the preliminary data for a mining concession issued by my ministry. We will also give you time to conduct due diligence before submitting your bids,” Simon said…. read more



Sino Approves White Mountain Gold Development - Sino Gold Mining’s board of directors recently approved development of the company’s second gold mine, the White Mountain gold project in Jilin Province, northern China. According to the Australiabased company, mobilization and site preparation was already in progress with site construction to commence in earnest once a provincial project permit is received. The Environmental Impact Assessment approval has already been received and Sino said it “was confident” that the provincial permit would be received within four to six weeks following the announcement …. read more

Rekodiq Project Will Involve $6 Billion Investment - Pakistan government officials believe that the joint public/private Rekodiq copper and gold project under way in Balochistan Province has the potential to draw foreign investment totaling as much as $6 billion over the next five years. The Rekodiq mining area has proven estimated reserves of 2 billion mt of copper and 20 million oz of gold. According to the current market price, the value of the deposits has been estimated at about $65 billion. The Balochistan government has a 25% stake …. read more




Ambatovy Sponsors Arrange for $2.1 Billion of Project Debt Financing - Sherritt International Corp. announced on August 24 that it has executed financing agreements for the provision of $2.1 billion of project debt to the Ambatovy nickel project in Madagascar with a group of international lenders from Japan, Korea, Europe, Canada and Africa. First disbursement of funds is expected after the satisfactory completion of certain conditions, and Sherritt said it expects these conditions to be satisfied later this year…. read more

Platmin Okays Development at Pilanesberg PGM Project - Platmin Ltd. recently reported the results of a feasibility study for its Tuschenkomst and Ruighoek properties at the company’s Pilanesberg project, and also announced that its board of directors approved development of the project on July 12 based on the favorable recommendation offered by the study. Platmin is a TSX and AIM (PPN) listed PGM exploration and development company with four advanced projects that host PGM mineral resources and reserves…… read more



Second Powerful Bounce at Utah Mine Kills Three Rescuers Trying to Reach Six Trapped Miners - Underground rescue operations took a turn for the worse on the evening of Thursday, August 16, when a significant bounce occurred at Genwal Resources, Inc.’s Crandall Canyon mine in Emery County, Utah, USA. Three rescue workers were killed, including a U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) inspector. Six others were hospitalized. The following day the mine owner, Robert E. Murray, and MSHA announced that all underground rescue efforts had been suspended. The rescuers were trying to reach six miners that had been trapped by a large cave-in. Seismologists at the University of Utah recorded seismic activity occurring at the time of the mine’s collapse early Monday morning, August 6. MSHA said that mine officials notified them of the collapse at 3:40 a.m. Seismologists were initially unsure…. read more

China Mining

Coal Age



Productivity Considerations for Shovels and Excavators
Better technology and more power make loading tools more productive, but well-trained operators are the most important aspect.
By Steve Fiscor, Editor-in-Chief

Cycle times can be one of the more puzzling aspects of open-pit mining. Depending on one’s perspective, the term has several connotations. A rope shovel operator might view a cycle as the point from which the bucket dumps to the point where it dumps again, while a truck driver might view it as the time it takes to complete a circuit from the face to the dump……. read more


Canadian Mining: A Crowded House
Although consolidation has chipped away at the ranks of major Canadian producers, investment levels remain high and junior companies are intent upon filling the gaps

By Russell A. Carter, Managing Editor

By any commonly accepted unit of measurement, Canada is a mining powerhouse, with a strong domestic industry and a hefty global share of mineral exports, international exploration activity and mining technology transfer. Canadian mines produce 60 commodities—ranking the nation among the top 10 global producers for 17 of them—and 60% of all mineral exploration companies are listed in Canada. It’s also estimated that about 50% of all mining- related equity financing takes place there as well. Canadian mineral production, including coal, was valued at $33.6 billion in 2006, almost 23% higher than the $27.4 billion reported in 2005...... read more





Technical Factors for Selecting Optimum Heap Leach Pad Sites
Selection of a pad site can have significant, long-lasting effects on leaching performance, safety and environmental impact.

By Saeed Karimi Nasab, Azadeh Hojat and Mohammad Reza Mollaei Fard

Since the 1970s, heap leaching has been widely used by mining companies to extract valuable minerals from low-grade oxide ores while generally offering improved worker and site safety, easier work conditions and less energy consumption than other processing methods. However, improper site selection of such facilities can significantly influence capital and operating costs and result in serious short-and-long term environmental hazards. This article outlines key technical factors that should be considered in selecting optimum sites for heap leach pads…... read more

Gia Industri


Partnership at Pyhäsalmi
Haulage is one key focus for partners Pyhäsalmi Mine Oy and Sandvik.

By Kyran Casteel, European Editor

For the mining industry, with its sitespecific requirements, to conceive the equipment supplier–mine customer relationship as a partnership is a simple and logical proposition. Many manufacturers preached the partnership message around the turn of the century. Practice, however, was not so simple: customer and supplier expectations of the level of supplier commitment to be provided sometimes differed, occasionally to the point of quite spectacular fallings out. Today, suppliers are offering more precisely defined after-market partnering deals..... read more



AIMEX On Display

Earlier this month AIMEX, the large mining trade show held every four years in Sydney, Australia, took place amid an Australian mining boom that is rivaled only by the golden days of the 1960s in terms of domestic and offshore project investment. Touted by its sponsors as the largest mining trade show ever to be held in Australia. The event served as the launching point for a number of mining-related products—many of which were developed by Australian suppliers—as well as a showcase for major international equipment manufacturers to present their latest models, technical innovations and services. The following are a sample of the technology that was on display at AIMEX 2007
Powertrans - exhibited a new prime-mover tractor unit for its mine haulage systems. The new T1250 tractor represents the company’s initial offering of its own prime movers for its surface and underground haulage systems; previously it used commercially available on-highway prime movers. According to Powertrans, it is now offering purpose-built tractor units in order to reduce lead times, to provide a prime mover specifically designed for mining applications and conditions, and with all safety systems built in from the ground up…. read more
Bonfiglioli Transmission (Australia) - was expected to highlight the torque density of its Transmital planetary drives. These multi-stage (up to 6 stages) planetary drives can handle peak torque outputs of more than 1,000,000 Nm and continuous outputs of more than 500,000 Nm. They are extremely efficient in transmitting power and very compact. Bonfiglioli has invested $16 million in design and production facilities and inventory, and these gearboxes can be specified and assembled in Australia.…… read more
FMC Technologies - displayed the new FMC 2000 Series conveyor idler rolls, which exceed CEMA load ratings. The new rolls feature pressed heads, eliminating distortion. Machined bearing seats, and the placement of the bearing close to the shaft supports, provides very low bearing misalignment. Excellent protection against the ingress of contaminants is provided by the combination of an outer quad-gap horizontal labyrinth member and a dual-lip nitrile rubber shaft contact seal…. read more




Liebherr Australia - showed off its new hydrostatic drive L 586 2plus2 wheel loader. This loader is a new size for Liebherr (20.43 mt, 250 kW) and is the flagship of the recently released generation 6 2plus2 range. The 2plus2 system employs a variable flow pump and two variable axial piston motors that accelerate the loader continuously from standstill to maximum speed in either forward or reverse. Fuel savings of up to 35% over conventional loaders are claimed. The engine and pump are mounted low at the rear of the loader, providing significant rear weight for high tipping…. read more
Vermeer Sales & Service - promoted the Vermeer TL1255 600- hp terrain leveller. The TL1255 has a 3.7 m wide tilting cutter drum, and can cut up to 81.2 cm deep. The tilting drum facilitates the use of laser guidance technology to control grade. Proprietary “top down cutting” technology is used, with the teeth cutting into rock as the machine moves forward. The TL1255 does not rely on tractive force to create tooth penetration. It employs heavy duty head shaft motors and splined headshafts. Because the cutting drum is an attachment, the TL1255 can be readily converted to work as a trencher, increasing its versatility…. read more

Danfoss Australia - displayed its new VLT family of AC drives, ranging in capacity from 0.18 kW to 1.2 MW and are highly efficient, with 98% of the power being transferred to the motor. Even this small percentage can mean significant heat loss on a large drive, but this is managed by transmitting 85% of the excess heat through the back-channel heat sink, removing it from the drive, panel and working environment…. read more

MicroMentis - staged the world release of its Surface Wave Intelligent Profiling System (SWIPS) for visualizing the mechanical and physical properties of solids at a range exceeding 100 m. The system comprises 16 wireless sensors, a shear wave impact generator and a user interface that incorporates the most advanced software applications for earth analysis and modeling. The components are packed into two carrying cases each weighing 15 kg, so the system is extremely portable. Operation of the SWIPS equipment requires minimal training….read more

Victron Energy BV - introduced its power solutions for stand-alone, standby and back-up power systems. The unique Phoenix MultiPlus inverter/charger has a powerful true sine wave inverter; a sophisticated battery charger with adaptive charge technology; a high-speed AC transfer switch in a single enclosure; and a compact robust housing. Unique advanced features include UPS functionality (the inverter takes over within 20 milliseconds of a power failure), power control (it takes AC load into account when charging the batteries), power assist (the inverter can supplement a generator for peak loads)…. read more


OCTOBER 16-19, 2007: Mine Closure 2007, Santiago, Chile. Contact: Olga Cherepanova; Tel: 562-652-1519; Fax: 562-652-1570; E-mail: info@mineclosure2007.com; Web: www.mineclosure2007.com

OCTOBER 22-24, 2007: World Gold 2007, Cairns, Australia. Contact: Alison McKenzie; Tel: 61 3 9662 3166; Fax: 61 3 9662 3662; E-mail: conference@ausimm.com.au

OCTOBER 31–NOVEMBER 3, 2007: Mining Indonesia 2007, Jakarta, Indonesia. Contact: Maysia Stephanie; Tel: 62 21 316 2001; Fax: 62 21 316 1983/4; E-mail: maysia@pamerindo.com; Web: www.pamerindo.com

NOVEMBER 5-11, 2007: 2007 Alaska Miners Association Annual Convention, Anchorage, Alaska, USA. Contact: AMA; Tel: 907-563-9229; Fax: 907-563-9225; E-mail: ama@alaskaminers.org; Web: www.alaskaminers.org

Bolivia Minera

China Mining

DECEMBER 2-4, 2007: CIRMA 1, 1st International Conference on Mineral Resources in Algeria, Algiers. Algeria. Contact: Sarah Ashmore; Tel: 44 207 5965053; E-mail: cirma@ite-exhibitions.com; Web: www.cirma-algeria.com

DECEMBER 3-7, 2007: Northwest Mining Association’s 113th Annual Meeting and Exposition, Spokane, Washington, USA. Contact: Northwest Mining Association; Tel.: 509-624-1158; Fax: 509-623-1241; E-mail: nwma_info@nwma.org; Web: www.nwma.org

JANUARY 17-20, 2008: IME 2008 Exhibition and 2nd Asian Mining Congress, Kolkata, India. Contact: The Mining, Geological & Metallurgical Institute of India; Tel: 91(33) 23573482; Fax: 91(33) 22435653; E-mail: mgmi@cal2.vsnl.net.in; Web: www.indianmining.com

FEBRUARY 5-6, 2008: Conference on Minerals Engineering, Luleå Technical University, Luleå, Sweden. Contact: Bertil Pålsson, Mineral Processing Division, LTU; Tel: 46 920 491314 Fax: 46 920 97364; E-mail: Bertil.Palsson@ltu.se

For a full calendar of mining industry conferences and events - click here


Newmont Mining Corp. announced that Russell Ball has been named senior VP and CFO; Guy Landsdown has been named senior VP, Project Development and Technical Services; and Randy Engel has been named senior VP, Strategy and Corporate Development.

Alcoa announced that Jinya Chen has been named president, Asia-Pacific Region. He succeeds Lloyd Jones, who will retire at the end of this year.


Kiu Hung International Holdings Ltd. announced the following appointments: Ying Chengping as chief engineer in Coal Geology and Exploration; Song Yuzhu as director and chief engineer in Mining Operation; and Fan Weikang as chief engineer in Pit Exploration.

Golden Star Resources Ltd. announced that its President and CEO, Peter Bradford, will step down as a director and officer of the company. The company also announced that S. Mitchel Wasel has been named VP Exploration. He replaces Dr. Doug Jones.

Marathon PGM Corp. announced the appointment of Raymond Mason as vice president of Operations.

Vista Gold Corp. announced the promotion of Frederick H. Earnest to president and COO.

Kimberly Gold Mines announced that Gary Harbottle has been appointed controller and De Anna Dwyer has been appointed corporate secretary and treasurer. Gene Higdem, secretary and treasurer, recently retired. The company also announced that Steve Cutler has been named VP Exploration.

Bucyrus International, Inc. recently announced its senior management integration plan for Bucyrus and its recent acquisition of DBT. The senior management team with overall corporate responsibility will continue to be lead by Timothy W. Sullivan, president and CEO. Overseeing activities in their respective disciplines are: William S. Tate, executive VP, Global Markets and Strategic Support; Craig R. Mackus, CFO; Barbara H. Stephens, senior VP, Human Resources; and Scott S. Cramer senior VP, General Counsel. In addition, with overall responsibility for the operation of the manufacturing units are Kenneth W. Krueger, COO, Bucyrus; and Luis de Leon, COO, DBT. At the time of the acquisition DBT’s management system included a management board, which will remain in place and include Sullivan. New to the board will be Dr. Ulrich Noll, VP of Operations-Longwall. Remaining on the board is de Leon and Hermann Oecking, DBT.


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