Location and History
Buryatzoloto comprises the underground gold mines of Irokinda and Zun-Holba in the Republic of Buryatia in the Russian Federation.
Irokinda is located in the Buryatia Republic, approximately 75 km from the town of Taksimo, where the Baikal- Amur railway station and airport are located. The mine is accessible from an all-season road. Production began in 1985.
Zun-Holba is also located in the Buryatia Republic, approximately 315 km from the village of Kultuk, which is on the Trans-Siberian railway, and 400 km from the city of Irkutsk. It is also accessible by an all-season road. Production began in 1986.
These assets were acquired by Nordgold in late 2008 as part of the controlling interest in High River Gold. Nordgold holds a 90.6% voting interest in Buryatzoloto.
In 2016, Buryatzoloto produced 97.7 thousand ounces of gold.
Gold production (koz)
- *due to lower grades from Irokinda mine following the completion of high grade Visokya and Veins 3 underground mines, and due to processing water supply issues experienced in Q1 2017.
Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves Summary (31 December 2017)
|Category||Ore (Kt)||Grade (g/t)||Au (Koz)|
|Measured and Indicated||764||6.08||149|
|Proven and Probable||1,513||5.78||281|
|Measured and Indicated||999||6.93||223|
|Proven and Probable||1,321||4.63||197|
The Irokinda and Zun-Holba mines are both relatively mature underground operations. Both contain a processing plants, each with crushing, grinding, gravity and flotation circuits. The Zun-Holba plant also contains a CIL circuit and related facilities. For processing, there are two crushing stages and two grinding stages using ball mills, followed by gravity separation, which produces concentrates for both the gravity and flotation circuits. The gravity circuit is used to recover free gold, after which smelting produces doré bars. Flotation is used to recover finer gold particles into a flotation concentrate. At the end of 2014, Buryatzoloto employed approximately 3,000 people.
Milling and Classification
CYANIDE LEACHING AND SORPTION
- At Zun-Holba, transitioning of mining operations from Adit and Shaft levels to Zun-Holba Deeps continue in 2018.
- Zun-Holba Deeps will commence ore production from first long-hole open stopes in 2018.
- Processing is focused on improving mill availability, and implementation of a cyanide analyzer/controller system.
- Exploration is focused in Zun-Holba Deeps.
- At Irokinda, ramping up of ore production from the new Sluchaynaya underground mine is in progress, while the first mechanized access development of Vein Visokaya commenced in H2 2018.
- Underground mine development is focused on accessing ore to match plant capacity.
- Processing plant expansion to 420ktpa and refurbishment was completed, optimization focused on mill availability and overall recovery improvements are in progress.
- Infill diamond drilling from underground has commenced at Medvezhaya; aligned with the Irokinda LoM development requirements.