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Kibo Mining nears final stages of Mbeya coal to power project mining feasibility study

East Africa – Tanzania focused mineral exploration and development company Kibo Mining is in the final stages of the Mbeya definitive mining feasibility study (MDMFS). This is a critical work stream of the final stage of the broader Mbeya Coal to Power project (MCPP) mining feasibility study.

Key highlights:

  • 820 m geotechnical diamond core drill programme confirmed slope angles of pit design to be well within safety requirements;
  • Programme results provided unexpected opportunity to further improve and optimise pit design;
  • Programme results confirmed decision not to do any river diversion as viable and prudent; and
  • Restatement of Mbeya coal resource commences.

    The Mbeya coal project consists of a 48 km long strike length
    The Mbeya coal project consists of a 48 km long strike length

“We are very pleased with the latest results and also with the overall progress of the MDMFS. Since announcing the very first set of results from the concept study and with every announcement since, the MCPP has consistently demonstrated that it is a project with considerable financial and technical substance. This will stand us in good stead during the coming weeks when we work on finalizing the power purchase agreement and other commercial agreements associated with the MCPP,” says Kibo Mining CEO Louis Coetzee.

MDMFS Phase 1 background

Kibo and its advisers, Minxcon Projects, are now in receipt of the final results for Phase 1 of Stage 2 of the MDMFS, which was completed during Q3 2015. The work mostly comprised of a geotechnical drilling programme on the Mbeya coal mine site.

The bulk of the work done during Phase 1, Stage 2, of the MDMFS consisted of an 820 m diamond core drill programme. This mission-critical component of the MDMFS was required to confirm the ground conditions in and around the final pit position,

which in turn determines the final slope angles in the pit design. The final slope angles are an absolute prerequisite for final and detailed mine design. The better than expected results from the geotechnical programme not only confirmed the slope angles but also made it possible to further improve the detailed mine design that will be completed during the MDMFS. It is expected that this improvement in the detailed mine design will make a positive contribution at a technical level and will also further enhance the overall economics of the Mbeya coal mine.

The drill programme comprised a total of 8 holes, accurately angled and directed at specific strategic positions to penetrate the pit hanging wall at depths varying from 95 – 120m and totalling 820m.

Geotechnical samples were collected from the recovered core and submitted for laboratory analysis and these results now form the basis of the geotechnical input parameters for the final mine design.

An immediate next step in the MDMFS will involve the restatement of the Mbeya coal resource.

This will be based on the technical work that was done on the coal resource during the feasibility studies to date, the additional geological data gained from the geotechnical drill programme, as well as the data from earlier exploration drilling, sampling and laboratory analysis that has not yet been incorporated in the Mbeya coal resource statement.

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Chantelle Kotze
Chantelle Kotze is a Johannesburg-based media professional. She is a contributor at Mining Review Africa (Clarion Events - Africa) and has created content for the media brand over the past 6 years.