Galaxy Resources Limited (“Galaxy”) is an international S&P / ASX 200 Index company with lithium production facilities, hard rock mines and brine assets in Australia, Canada, and Argentina. Galaxy wholly owns the James Bay lithium pegmatite project in Quebec, Canada and the Mt Cattlin mine in Ravensthorpe Western Australia, which is currently producing spodumene and tantalum concentrate.
Primero was first engaged by Galaxy in 2016 to assist in the restart of processing operations at Mt Cattlin and has been retained to deliver a variety of projects since.
Located two kilometres north of the town of Ravensthorpe in Western Australia, Galaxy is mining pegmatite ore and processing on site to produce a spodumene concentrate and a tantalum by-product.
In 2016 Galaxy engaged a team to upgrade and modify the existing circuit to improve product recoveries and increase the annual production of the plant.
After several setbacks and delays, Primero was engaged in late August 2016 to manage the completion of the works and bring the plant back into operation.
Primero was responsible for the finalisation of design, procurement, construction, commissioning, and operation of the plant until the end of December 2016 when control of the plant was handed back to Galaxy. Primero remained on-site assisting Galaxy to meet the plant throughput to nameplate including maintenance of the plant.
Primero was able to support Galaxy from process design through to operation, ultimately enabling galaxy to ship 10,000t of concentrate by the end of 2016.
The plant consists of a 3-stage crushing circuit producing a -14mm product from ROM ore to provide feed to a fine ore bin that supplies the concentrator.
The concentrator consists of spiral classification, reflux classifiers, and a two stage Heavy (or Dense) Media Separation (HMS) plant. The final spodumene concentrate is stacked on a pad adjacent to the plant, where it is drained and prepared for trucking to port.
Coarse waste HMS plant float material is collected in a surge bin and then trucked to the waste dump. The HMS pre-screen undersize (-1.0mm) is treated by gravity suspension (spiral classifiers) to recover tantalite. Tantalite circuit tailings and other plant spillage streams are directed to a thickener for process water recovery. Thickener underflow is pumped to a tailings dam approximately 500 metres from the plant.
The James Bay Lithium Mine Project is in the Nord-du-Québec administrative region of Québec. It’s envisioned that the concentrate will then be transported to a conversion facility located in Quebec, Canada.
Primero has been retained to complete a definitive feasibility study for upstream concentration and a scoping study for the downstream Lithium Carbonate / Hydroxide processing facilities.
Primero was awarded the packages of work after being recognised for the company’s deep understanding of lithium project development and the demonstrated successful delivery of engineering studies, design and construction projects for both Galaxy and their peers at Tawana and Pilbara Minerals.
Scope for the studies includes, but is not limited to: