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Q4 2023 - SX Operations Update, Cloncurry

True North Copper Limited (ASX:TNC) (True North, TNC or the Company) achieved copper metal production for Q4 2023 of 70.38t (288.612t of copper sulphate @ 24.39% Cu). This is less than operationally expected.

SX operations during Q4 2023

Q4 2023 production was less than operationally expected due to several events during late November 2023 and throughout December 2023. These included:

  • A change in TNC’s operational power supply source (Total Generators to Aggreko) resulting in unforeseen harmonics issues.
  • Failure of the tank agitator in TK5.
  • Reduction of crystal formation due to severe heat conditions including more than 23 days >40 degrees Celsius in December 2023 (see http://www.bom.gov.au/places/qld/cloncurry/), and a plant heat exchange failure.

Current soluble copper levels – January 2024

  • TNC’s SX production update in its Q3 2023 quarterly report was based on independent metallurgical advice (third-party consultancy). This consultancy was engaged across SX Plant commissioning and continues to advise across operations.
  • The consultants conducted a site visit last week to evaluate the heap and plant’s current performance.
  • The consultants confirmed, significant amounts of copper are still leaching from the heap, and the crystal product is of a very high quality.
  • Current soluble copper levels from the heaps are Heap 6 - 0.66g/L (sample results taken 13-01-2024) and Heap 5-1.21g/L (sample results taken 10-01-2024).

Change to SX Plant management

  • On-going maintenance issues have inhibited the process plant’s performance.
  • TNC replaced and strengthened key process plant management personnel during Q3 2023.

Q1 2024 key ASX Announcements include:

  • Toll Milling and Concentrate Offtake Agreement Execution
  • Wallace North Reserve Statement
  • Cloncurry Copper Project Recommencement of Mining - Production Forecast and Price Guidance
  • Finalisation and 1st drawdown of $28M USD finance facility
  • Exploration results across Mt Oxide and Cloncurry
  • Mt Oxide - Vero Resource Update
  • Cloncurry Copper Project Reserve update


True North Copper’s Managing Director, Marty Costello said:

The performance and availability of the SX Plant over the back-end of this past quarter has been frustrating. TNC demands better performance of its SX Plant. We have made significant changes to the SX Plant’s management team. Our management team is also working collaboratively with specialist industry consultants, and we are confident in our revised strategy and capacity. Copper sulphate production through the SX Plant represents about 10% of our proposed Cloncurry Copper Project Life of Mine (90% is sulphide concentrate production).

Over the last quarter we have made great progress finalising our restart plans and our tolling and offtake agreements. We are excited to soon announce these developments.

Click here for the full ASX Release

This article includes content from True North Copper, licensed for the purpose of publishing on Investing News Australia. This article does not constitute financial product advice. It is your responsibility to perform proper due diligence before acting upon any information provided here. Please refer to our full disclaimer here.


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