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King River Resources (ASX:KRR) Selects Site for New HPA Facility

Summary

  • King River Resources has selected the Kwinana area within the Western Trade Coast (WTC) industrial area to station its site for HPA production.
  • The Company has adopted a new HPA PFS plan, which utilises the HPA process on readily available aluminium chemical feedstocks. 
  • PFS is expected to be delivered in Q1 2021, underpinned by additional testwork and engineering works.

King River Resources Limited (ASX: KRR) has taken a step ahead towards its high purity alumina (HPA) production endeavours. The Company has decided to base its HPA processing facility on the Kwinana area located within the Western Trade Coast (WTC) industrial region. The decision follows the adoption of a new HPA PFS plan, which includes the shifting of HPA production from a mining operation in Kimberley to a WA-based industrial site.

As earlier reported by KRR in November, the change in the PFS plan for producing HPA would now use its HPA process on aluminium chemical feedstocks derived from other industrial processes. The change was driven by metallurgical testwork and engineering costings as part of the PFS on the Speewah Project. 

READ MORE: King River Resources (ASX:KRR) Identifies Alternate path to HPA production

The Company believes that the change would aid in completing the PFS while also fast-tracking the HPA production and improving the business case.

Industrial Site in WTC

After considering several sites in Western Australia and Queensland, the Company has settled on the Kwinana area, which is one of the four prominent industrial estates within the WTC. Significantly, WTC is situated around 30-40 km south of Perth’s CBD on the eastern side of Cockburn Sound. The four leading industrial estates within the WTC are:

  • Kwinana Industrial Area (KIA)
  • Rockingham Industry Zone (RIZ)
  • Australian Marine Complex (AMC)
  • Latitude 32

The state’s premier industrial area WTC is associated with several infrastructure advantages that are expected to facilitate the process of HPA production. 

Kalkine Group Image (Data Source: KRR ASX Update, 15 December 2020)

ALSO READ: Recounting King River Resources’ (ASX:KRR) 2020 Journey Across Projects

PFS Advancing Well

The decision to modify the Prefeasibility Study (PFS) to produce HPA from an alternative chemical feedstock will require additional permitting studies, engineering and testwork, which are now underway.

While the Company would continue the Speewah mine development testwork and studies, the PFS would zero in on Kwinana’s industrial site. It would use the Company’s HPA process on readily available aluminium chemical feedstocks, which are derived from other industrial processes.

ALSO READ: Mix of Factors Sweetening the Pot for King River Resources’ (ASX:KRR) HPA Product

Environmental and Permitting Studies in Progress

King River has engaged an environmental consultant for assisting with both site selection and permitting requirements, concerning the chemical processing type needed for an HPA operation. The consultant has experience in the Kwinana industrial area.

Preliminary advice indicates that selecting the Kwinana Industrial Area (KIA) as an HPA plant site is a sound decision, as it is a large industrial area created explicitly for such type of production activities. Meanwhile, it also offers adequate separation from sensitive receptors. Also, the KIA’s specific criteria for protecting ambient air quality and noise standards reflects the industrial land use. The environmental and permitting investigation is in progress and is expected to be finalised by mid-January 2021.

Engineering Timetable

Como Engineers are engaged in the redesigning and costing of the process flowsheet on the basis of simplified metallurgical process testwork. The preliminary design and costings is scheduled to wrap up by January-end 2021. 

The Speewah engineering study has highlighted the potential benefits of the new development strategy, which is a simpler process compared to the Speewah operation and thereby has fewer process requirements. 

Significantly, fewer process and logistical components are expected to de-risk and fast-track through the Definitive Feasibility Studies (DFS), financing, permitting, construction and HPA production. 

Kalkine Group Image (Data Source: KRR ASX Update, 15 December 2020)

The HPA refining process along with the industrial aluminium chemical feedstock and reagents utilised in the process are commercial-in-confidence.

Metallurgical Progress

Following the successful production of a high purity precursor compound from the industrial feedstock, the Company has produced additional two batches of precursor from the same industrial chemical feedstock at a larger scale with similar results.

Testwork and analytical assay checks are ongoing with the focus on reducing the impurity levels in the precursor compound to below 1ppm per element. It would ensure a 4N (99.99% Al2O3) HPA purity product on calcination.

ALSO READ: King River Resources (ASX:KRR) Rides High on New HPA Testwork Update

The modified PFS, which will require additional engineering and test work, is now anticipated to be delivered in Q1 2021.

KRR shares traded at $0.024 on 15 December 2020 (at 03:42 PM AEDT)

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