Northern Star Expanding Jundee Gold Production
Northern Star established both the cost and effectiveness of the increased capacity at Jundee by conducting a trial throughout October that resulted in record throughput of 131,669 mt during the month and production of 20,414 oz of gold. Northern Star is also studying a phasetwo plant expansion aimed at potentially increasing gold production to 300,000 oz/y. Northern Star’s production growth strategy for Jundee stems from outstanding exploration results that highlight the scope for substantial increases in the project’s inventory and mine life. In-mine resource and exploration drilling continues to expand the known extent of all the major mining areas while also growing new discoveries.
Northern Star Managing Director Bill Beament said the combination of the exploration results and the successful processing trial show Jundee can make a strong contribution to the company’s organic growth strategy. He added, “The outstanding exploration results demonstrate the potential to grow Jundee’s inventory in several areas. In light of these results, we are confident that we can increase the production rate at Jundee and also continue to increase mine life.
“This strategy is particularly attractive given that the initial production increase will be achieved for virtually no capital cost. This means Jundee will play an important role in enabling us to achieve our goal of growing company-wide production to 600,000 oz/y from organic sources in 2018.” Northern Star owns and operates four mines in Western Australia—Jundee, Kanowna Belle, Plutonic and Paulsens— and has a 51% interest in and is operator of the East Kundana joint venture. These mines produced 558,143 oz of gold attributable to Northern Star in the company’s fiscal year to June 30.