Identified as a goal at its Uis tin mine in Namibia, AfriTin Mining is pursuing a metallurgical test work program to explore the by-product potential of ancillary metals.
The 2012 Joint Ore Reserves Committee-compliant mineral resource estimate for the Uis mine contains ancillary metals with inventories of 6 091 t of contained tantalum and 450 265 t of contained lithium oxide (Li2O), both grading at 85 ppm tantalum and 0.63 percent Li2O.
“Following the achievement of nameplate tin concentrate production in November 2020, the Uis tin mine has exceeded production forecasts.
“This provides the ideal platform for our metallurgical test work programme to investigate the potential of two major by-products, namely lithium oxide and tantalum,” says CEO Anthony Viljoen.
Test work for a tantalum concentrate is at an advanced stage, while Li2O concentrate test work is progressing to a second stage.
“Successful implementation of by-product streams may significantly increase our profit margin and allow us to realise the goal of positioning the company in the lowest quartile of the world tin producer cost curve,” adds Viljoen.