Millennium Minerals (ASX: MOY) has demonstrated the ability of the process plant at its Nullagine Gold Project in the East Pilbara to run at sustained rates of 220 tonnes per hour, 30 tonnes above design.
Importantly, the performance supports the company's plan to lift production above the base case design as the mine moves into the new financial year.
Gold dore poured attributable to December amounted to 5,786 ounces, with metallurgical recovery averaging 92.5% for the month.
This is well above the company's recovery assumption of 89%.
The SAG mill average throughput rate was 198 tonnes per hour for the month, with sustained periods over 24 hours above 200 tonnes per hour. Tonnes milled amounted to 125,411 dry tonnes from a little over 129,000 wet tonnes delivered.
Critical operating parameters of plant throughput and gold recovery continue to be met for the month of December
Millennium added that average throughput rates for December of 198 tonnes per hour supported the requirement to increase throughput from 189 tonnes per hour to about 200 tonnes per hour that would be necessary to increase stage one throughput of 1.5 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) to at least 1.7 Mtpa.
It noted the key business objective is to find that combination of throughput and head grade that yields the highest return and best profit margin from the production assets.
Millennium noted that this did not necessarily rely solely on the tonnage mined and treated.
Future production, cost and cash flow guidance in respect of the 2013 financial year will be given in the current quarter.
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