Stage 4 Expansion Study
The Stage 4 expansion study continues to advance with a re-focussed mandate and with the benefit of increased operating data relating to the efficiencies and capacities of the various Stage 3 units of equipment as well as the units that have been introduced post Stage 3. This includes units like the Hydrosort unit and bicarbonate recovery. This has presented a valuable opportunity to improve and optimise various aspects of the Stage 4 study and the resultant expected future outcomes. These outcomes are expected to result in production of up to 7.5Mlb U3O8 pa, but only when higher uranium prices justify expansion. During the interim, various piloting and testing programmes will continue in order to consider the available options and enhancements in preparation for this future expansion. This work has the advantage of progressively improving the performance of the existing operation in terms of both recovery and operating cost. The ultimate goal of this work is higher production, with reduced unit costs and improved process efficiencies, while reducing feed grade into the plant to the remaining reserve average of approximately 450ppm U3O8. The work being undertaken will ensure that the project will be in an excellent position to respond at short notice for expansion when the price incentive is considered to be sufficient.