Centaurus Metals Limited (ASX: CTM) is an Australian-based minerals exploration company focused on the near-term development of the Jaguar Nickel Sulphide Project, located in the world-class Carajás Mineral Province in Northern Brazil – one of the world’s premier mining addresses.
Centaurus completed its acquisition of the Jaguar Project from global mining giant, Vale S.A, in April 2020, delivering the Company with an exceptional exploration, growth and development opportunity in the international nickel sulphide sector.
Following completion of the acquisition, Centaurus immediately commenced a major drilling program, and has since defined a global Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) totalling 80.6Mt grading 0.91% Ni for 730,700t of contained nickel. View full Resource statement.
Importantly, more than 500,000 tonnes of the contained nickel in the Global MRE is located within 200m of surface, representing 70% of the total contained metal.
Centaurus completed a positive independent Base Case Scoping Study for the Jaguar Project development in March 2021 (based on conventional mining and processing to produce nickel concentrate), and completed a Value-Add Scoping Study in May 2021, which contemplated processing the nickel concentrate using a hydrometallurgical process (POx) to produce battery-grade nickel sulphate for the growing electrification supply chain.
Based on a 2.7Mtpa nickel sulphate plant, the Value-Add Scoping Study delivered production of +20,000tpa of recovered nickel-in-sulphate and +9,600tpa of a mixed sulphide precipitate (MSP) over an initial 13-year mine life.
At a life-of-mine nickel price of US$7.50/lb, the Value Add development scenario delivers a post-tax NPV for the Jaguar Project of ~A$1.1 billion.
The results of the Value-Add Scoping Study provide the Company with a high level of confidence that the production of a nickel sulphate product on site at Jaguar is a highly viable option and one that should be aggressively pursued. The results have also allowed the Centaurus Board to commit to proceeding directly to a Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) for the production of +20,000 tonnes per annum of nickel sulphate at the Jaguar Project over an initial mine life of ~13 years. The DFS by its very nature will also incorporate the study of the production of nickel concentrate, as this will be the product feed to the hydrometallurgical (nickel sulphate) circuit.
Since completing these Scoping Studies, Centaurus has significantly increased the Resource base at the Jaguar Project, with the new, larger December 2021 Mineral Resource to underpin mine optimisation and production profile studies in 2022 that will determine the optimal mine capacity for the project development. Any expansion of the processing plant capacity and/or production profile is likely to have a material positive impact on the project economics and delivery of nickel-in-sulphate, which currently stands at 20,000ktpa for 13 years.
In parallel with the completion of the DFS, Centaurus is also continuing a major drilling effort at Jaguar aimed at extending the existing Resource base and making new discoveries.
Centaurus also holds the development-ready Jambreiro Iron Ore Project, where a July 2019 Pre-Feasibility Study confirmed low costs and strong economics for a 1Mtpa iron ore mining operation.