Blackthorn Resources' (ASX: BTR) Pre-Feasibility Study for its wholly-owned Kitumba copper project in Zambia is nearing completion with results expected to be released in the second half of August 2013.
Importantly, the study has identified underground mining as the preferred mining operation.
It also determined that a combination of flotation, leaching and Solvent Extraction and Electro Winning (SXEW) processes would present the best treatment option.
As part of the underground mining assessment, sub-level open stoping and sub-level cave mining methods have been considered and are being evaluated. Some additional time is required to more fully complete this comparison.
"The PFS is an important step in assessing the economic potential of the Kitumba Project on the path to production and we look forward to publishing the results of the study in due course," managing director Scott Lowe said.
"Meanwhile the core observed in the infill drilling is showing very promising mineralisation and we look forward to receiving first assay results during August 2013."
The infill drilling is designed to convert a portion of the Indicated Resource at Kitumba to the Measured category along with a possible resource extension.
Wide intercepts of high-grade copper mineralisation have been intersected in the initial infill drilling which is consistent with previous drill results from the Kitumba deposit.
Kitumba, which is part of Blackthorn's wholly-owned Mumbwa Project, has an Indicated Resource of 87.6 million tonnes at 1.17% copper at the 0.5% copper cut-off.
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