THUNDER BAY – Mining News – North American Palladium Ltd. has announced preliminary palladium production results for the year ended December 31, 2012 and provided a development update on its Lac des Iles (“LDI”) mine expansion.
In a press statement, the company states, “Lac des Iles Palladium Mine Production in 2012, the LDI mine produced 163,980 ounces of payable palladium, achieving the higher end of management’s annual production guidance of 150,000 to 160,000 ounces. In the fourth quarter of 2012, the LDI mine produced 44,294 ounces of payable palladium, with the LDI mill processing 511,226 tonnes of ore, of which 239,794 tonnes came from underground sources (with an average palladium mill head grade of 4.93 grams per tonne), and 271,432 tonnes from surface sources (with an average palladium mill head grade of 2.44 grams per tonne). The combined average palladium mill head grade was 3.61 grams per tonne, and the palladium recovery was 82%”.
“For the twelve month period in 2012, the LDI mill processed 2,063,260 tonnes of ore, of which 853,600 tonnes came from underground sources (with an average palladium mill head grade of 5.19 grams per tonne), and 1,209,660 tonnes from surface sources (with an average palladium mill head grade of 2.21 grams per tonne). The combined average palladium mill head grade for the year was 3.44 grams per tonne, and the palladium recovery was 78%”.
North American Palladium’s 2012 financial results will be released in February.
Lac des Iles Mine Expansion Development Update
During the fourth quarter, the Company made significant progress advancing the critical aspects of its mine expansion. On surface, the major construction components are now completed. The headframe, the main substation, the hoist house building, the service hoist (which is used for shaft sinking) and the auxiliary hoist are all fully operational and 100% completed. The installation of the production hoist has commenced and commissioning is scheduled for the first quarter. The remaining work on surface includes the installation of the main skip dump and the surface ore bins. Underground, shaft sinking is progressing well, in line with the Company’s scheduled rates of advancement.
North American Palladium is currently seeking employees in a number of positions in Ontario. This includes a Chief Mine Engineer, Mine Technician, and several Journeyman positions. Visit the company’s website for more information. (www.napalladium.com)
The shaft sinking is currently at a an approximate depth of 475 metres below surface, representing almost 60% of the total 825 metres planned for the first phase of the shaft sinking. Installation of the 740-metre level loading pocket is scheduled for the first quarter, and the ramp and stope development is also progressing on schedule. Accordingly, the Company maintains its development plan to begin mining via shaft in the third quarter this year.