Australia-based Rafaella Resources has produced first tungsten from its underground Santa Comba mine in Spain.
The start-up is a culmination of its plan first announced in early March to advance the underground element, and as of now it has made much progress, including the installation, permitting and commissioning of the pilot plant – through which it is processing stockpiles left from operations dating back to 1985.
At that time, it also set a September goal for its start date, making the advancement announced this week right on schedule.
Meantime, Rafaella is continuing progress with its feasibility study; officials said the metallurgical test-work it has performed has provided the good news that the ore is highly susceptible to magnetic separation.
“Delays at the test-lab in the UK have led to some slippage in the completion of the FS; however, the additional time is being used to complete important water management studies and to advance discussions with the quarry operator concerning a solution to gain early access to tungsten ore within the quarry permit.”
Moving ahead, the miner is conducting an underground study so it may scale up its operations, and with that has come a limited drilling campaign of 12 drill holes being managed by Sondeos y Perforaciones Industriales del Bierzo, S.A. (SPI). The company has completed six drill holes to date for a total of 764 meters of a planned 1,550 m.
In related Rafaella Resources news, the company said it has become the newest member of the Critical Raw Materials Alliance, a representative body of primary producers, traders and associations of critical raw materials.
Source: Rafaella Resources