Alamos Gold has released the results of a scoping study of the Aği Daği and Kirazli gold properties in northwest Turkey that it acquired from Teck Resources and Fronteer Development in January 2010. The properties are located approximately 25 km from each other on the Biga peninsula in Çanakkale province. The scoping study assumes the deposits will be mined by open-pit methods and that the Aği Daği and Kirazli properties will each have stand-alone crushing, agglomeration, heap leach, and process plant facilities, plus separate owner-operated mining fleets. The mining rates are projected at 15,000 mt/d for Aği Daği and 10,000 mt/d for Kirazli. The processing plants will produce high-grade doré bars. Upfront capital costs are estimated at $207.5 million.
Combined total gold production from the two projects is estimated at 1.1 million oz at an average total cash cost of $315/oz, with silver treated as a byproduct. Annual production over the first eight years of operation is estimated at 135,000 oz/y of gold and 621,600 oz/y of silver. Mine life is projected at more than eight years at a 1.24:1 waste-to-ore ratio. Production is planned to begin at Kirazli in the first quarter of 2013, followed by Aği Daği in the first quarter of 2014.
Only oxide mineral resources are considered in the mine plans. The projects include an established camp facility and available water supply, are located on the power grid, and are road accessible.
Alamos President and CEO John A. McCluskey said, “The relatively low grade of the projects is off-set by favorable engineering characteristics, including the shallowness and low waste-to-ore ratios of the deposits, the ore’s excellent metallurgical characteristics, and close proximity to infrastructure.”
Alamos expects to complete a prefeasibility study and submit environmental impact assessments for the projects by the end of the second quarter of 2011. Among other considerations, the prefeasibility study will look into the use of a contract miner, which would reduce the capital costs outlined in the scoping study.
An aggressive in-fill and extension drilling program has begun at Aği Daği, the primary objective being to upgrade the inferred resources to measured and indicated and to gather additional metallurgical and geotechnical data to further optimize the project economics for the prefeasibility study. Drilling will also target expansion of resources at the known deposits and exploration of high-priority targets in close proximity to these resources.