Bushveld Vanadium’s vision is to build the largest, lowest-cost vertically integrated primary vanadium platform.
- The world’s largest primary vanadium platform means having the largest high-grade primary vanadium resource base and the largest primary vanadium production in the world.
- The lowest cost means targeting the lowest cost position on the vanadium production cash cost curve, leveraging the high in-situ and in-magnetite V2O5 grades and the open-cast mining proposition of Bushveld Minerals’ deposits as well as access to low-cost brownfield processing infrastructure.
- The most vertically integrated primary vanadium platform means development of downstream operations beyond production of end-use vanadium products to also include development and deployment of vanadium applications in the energy storage market, where Bushveld intends to manufacture vanadium electrolyte and to assemble large-scale VRFBs.
Bushveld Vanadium comprises three key assets:
MOKOPANE VANADIUM PROJECT
The Mokopane Vanadium Project is an important part of Bushveld Minerals’ vanadium strategy. The project comprises one of the world’s largest primary vanadium resources as well as high in-situ (1.4%) and in-concentrate (1.75%) V2O5 grades.
Location & Licensing
The project is located on the central portion of the northern limb of the Bushveld Complex, the second-largest host of vanadium resources in the world. The project is in the Mokopane District of Limpopo Province, approximately 65km west of Polokwane.
The Mokopane Vanadium Project has a prospecting right (LP95PR), which incorporates five farms covering a total of 10,072.795 hectares (ha). An application for a Mining Right was lodged in March 2015 and is currently still being processed by South Africa’s Department of Minerals Resources.
Geology & Resources
The Mokopane Vanadium Project deposit is a layered ore body along a 5.5km north-south strike at a dip of between 18° to 22° to the west. The Project comprises three adjacent and parallel magnetite layers, namely the Main Magnetite Layer (MML), the Main Magnetite Layer Hanging Wall layer (MML-HW) and the AB Zone. The project has 298Mt (JORC) reserves and resources, across three parallel overlying magnetite layers – the MML, the MML Hanging Wall and the AB Zone, with grades ranging from 1.6% to over 2% V2O5.
A pre-feasibility study (PFS) on the Mokopane Vanadium Project was completed and published in January 2016. The PFS was premised on only the MML resource being mined and processed through a primary salt roast and leach process to produce over 99% purity V2O5. The project economics are attractive: a base case operation of 1.0Mtpa of run-of-mine (RoM), producing 672,000tpa of V2O5 concentrate with an average V2O5 grade of 1.75%, which is then processed through a primary salt roast and leach process to produce 9,525tpa of a >99% purity V2O5product. The study yielded a pre-tax NPV of US$418 million and a pre-tax IRR of 24% after a capital expenditure of US$298 million.
Bushveld Minerals believes the Mokopane Vanadium Project is robust enough to advance to a bankable feasibility study. The Company continues to evaluate the potential to bring the asset into production in the most cost efficient manner possible. The intention remains to develop the project with a strategic partner at an appropriate point in the near future.
Vametco Alloys (Proprietary) Limited
Bushveld Minerals has an interest in Vametco through its 45% shareholding in Bushveld Vametco Limited (BVL), which in turn owns a 78.8% share in Strategic Minerals Corporation, the 75% majority shareholder in Vametco Holdings (Proprietary) Limited (“Vametco Holdings”). Vametco Holdings holds 100% of the operating company Vametco Alloys (Proprietary) Limited (“Vametco”).
Vametco is an integrated mining and processing plant situated 8km to the north-east of Brits in the North West Province of the Republic of South Africa.
Vametco owns the new order minerals rights for vanadium and other associated minerals over Portion 1 of the farm Uitvalgrond 431 JQ and Portion 1 of the farm Krokodilkraal 426 JQ in Brits. Vametco operates an open pit mine supplying ore to its vanadium processing plant located on the same properties.
The processing plant at Vametco is fed ore from the co-located Vametco mine. The Vametco mine is an open pit mine along a 3.5km strike running west to east and dipping at between 14° and 20° in a northerly direction. The mineral resource is estimated to be 136Mt (JORC) with average grades of 2.10% V2O5 in magnetite. This includes ore reserves of 27Mt (JORC) which have been shown to have some of the highest in-magnetite vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) grades in the world, averaging 2.55% V2O5 in magnetite.
Vametco’s annual production capacity is approximately 2,800 metric tons vanadium (MTV) and its product is a trademark vanadium nitride product called Nitrovan™, sold globally to steel mills where it is used as a micro-alloying additive to strengthen steel.
Brits Vanadium Project
The Brits Vanadium Project comprises prospecting rights on several farms adjacent to Vametco. The project includes a mining right under application for vanadium.
- The project hosts high-grade vanadium mineralisation in several magnetite layers. The mineralisation is outcropping and a continuation of the Vametco deposit strike with similar or higher vanadium grades. The project offers a potential extension of Vametco’s life of mine and presents cheaper near-surface ore for the Vametco plant post-acquisition. Historical drilling shows in-magnetite grades of as much as 2.6% V2O5.
- The Company is in the process of securing regulatory approval in terms of section 11 of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) for change of control in respect of the acquired Sable Metals & Mining Limited, a South African based resources company. Following the regulatory approvals, Bushveld Minerals will commence with activities to delineate the shallow resource.