Sandfire Resources’ DeGrussa Copper-Gold Mine, located 900km north-east of Perth in Western Australia, is one of the Asia-Pacific region’s premier, high-grade copper mines. DeGrussa’s remarkable progress from discovery in April 2009 through resource drill-out, feasibility, financing and construction, and development – just over three years from discovery drill-hole to the first production – has set new benchmarks for the efficient development of resources in Western Australia.
The mine will produce up to 300,000 tonnes of high-grade copper concentrate annually. Following initial operation of the mine, further ore reserves and mineral reserve additions extended mine life to mid-2021.
The vision of Sandfire Resources is to be a significant, mid-tier mining company that operates at the upper quartile of international performance benchmarks for the industry.
Commencing with an initial two-year open pit mining operation which was completed in April 2013, the DeGrussa Operation is based on a long-term underground mine delivering sulphide ore to an on-site 1.5Mtpa concentrator.
The DeGrussa concentrator is designed for ultimate performance, with the underground mine allowing simultaneous extraction from multiple faces, providing production flexibility. Outotec had previously partnered with Sandfire, providing key concentrator equipment including comminution (ball and SAG mills), flotation (24 cells), analyzers (PSI and Courier) and dewatering (thickening and filtration technology).
In late August 2015, Sandfire engaged Outotec to supply the upgrade for its Outotec Larox® pressure filter. The new plate pack was to be in SAF 2205, in order to prolong component service life in the high sulphur slurry environment. Scope comprised design, supply, installation, and commissioning of all internal operating components. The Outotec team worked closely with Sandfire to deliver not only a robust, optimum design on the upgraded filter plate but also to ensure the turnkey installation of the unit adhered to the client’s critical timeline.