|Commodity||Copper, Gold, Iron Ore|
Nearest Landmark: Arapiraca
Distance: 15 km NW of Landmark
Latitude: 9° 38' (North)
Longitude: 36° 34' (West)
|Owners||Aura Minerals Inc.|
|Operator||Mineracao Vale Verde Ltda|
|Production||5.5 Mtpa to 8 Mtpa copper-gold-iron ore|
|Deposit Type||Magmatic sulphides and layered mafic intrusives & Hydrothermal|
|Reserves & Resources||196 Mt at 0.49% copper, 0.09 g/t gold, 15.48% iron (Serrote,
measured & indicated, Dec/11)
7.6 Mt at 0.57% copper, 0.16 g/t gold, 19.34% iron (Caboclo, measured & indicated, Dec/11)
|Mining Method||Open pit|
|Processing Method||Crushing, grinding, flotation, magnetic concentration|
|Mine Life||Over 30 years|
|Mining Equipment||Truck & shovel|
|Processing equipment||Crushers, SAG mill, Ball mills, Flotation circuit, Thcikener, Magnetic concentrator|
Mineracao Vale Verde Ltda
Last updated: August 16, 2012
The Serrote copper-gold-iron ore project is located in eastern Brazil in the central-southern part of the state of Alagoas. It includes the Serrote and the Caboclo mineral deposits. The project is readily accesible by paved highway from Maceio the state's capital city.
Copper was discovered in the region in 1977 following a the completion of a geological and airborne geophysical surveys by the Brazilian Geological Survey. In the early 1980s Vale followed up on the anomalies and in 1982 discovered the Serrote da Laje deposit. The project is 100% owned by Aura Minerals Inc. through Mineracao Vale Verde Ltda, its wholly-owned subsidiary.
A 2009, Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) completed on the Serrote mineral deposit envisioned open pit mining of the mineral resource and the construction of a 15 million tonnes per year concentrator plant which would produce a copper-gold concentrate and a separate magnetite concentrate by employing the use of a magnetic separator. The Caboclo mineral deposit was not included in the PEA.
A definitive Feasibility Study commenced in July 2011 and is scheduled to be completed in the third quarter of 2012.
The project is located in the central-southern part of the Alagoas state in eastern Brazil close to the Atlantic shore. It is 160 km on paved roads from the city of Maceio which is the province's capital city.
The project is located on a slightly undulating Tertiary peneplain overlooked by a erosion resistant ridge - the Serrote da Laje.
Climate is semi-arid with irregular rainfalls that total 300-800 mm per year. Average annual temperature is 27 deg C to 29 deg C.
The project is located in a suture zone of the northern part of the San Fracisco craton with early to late Proterozoic mobile belts.
The Serrote da Laje Complex is a highly tectonized mafic-ultramafic intrusion hosted by gneisses, migmatites and granulites. The mafic rocks are thorougly altered by metamorphic or hydrothermal processes. Economic mineralization occurs in interlayered magnetite, orthopyroxenite and norite layers. Copper-gold mineralization is hosted in tabular ore-bodies up to dozens of meters thick that extend hundred meters along the strike. Sulphides are located in between minerals (interstitial) and as inclusions in the host minerals.
In the Caboclo deposit mineralization is disseminated in the intercummulus of magnetite and pyroxenes. The chalcopyrite and bornite were also remobilized in fractures and breccias hosted by the ultramafic rocks.
As of December 2011, measured and indicated mineral resources were estimated at 196 Mt at 0.49% copper, 0.09 g/t gold, 15.48% iron for Serrote; and, 7.6 Mt at 0.57% copper, 0.16 g/t gold, 19.34% iron for Caboclo.
The feasibility study would propose a conventional open pit mining operation capable of delivering 5.5 million to 8.0 million tonnes of ore to a concentrator.
The PEA process plant is a standard copper treatment facility that would produce a copper-gold concentrate and a magnetite concentrate. Processing involves primary crushing, SAG and ball mill grinding, copper flotation, thickening and filtering; and, magnetite concentration of copper circuit tailings stream.
The project is 586 km by rail from Camacari located in the Bahia state which is Brazil's only copper smelter.
A one meter gauge railroad is only 4 km from the project and passes through the city of Arapiraca and connects with the Atlantic ports of Suape (Pemambuco State), Aracaju (Sergipe State), and Salvador (Bahia State).
The magnetite concentrate would be transported on railway to the Suape port. Copper concentrate would be trucked to the Maceio port.
A 500 kV power line is 15 km north of the project. Water pipelines bring water from the San Francisco region.
The original area was a dry forest and shrubs area that was subsequently replaced by seasonal farms that mostly conduct business during the rainy season (June to September).