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First Fully-Automated Underground Mine Achieves 80% Nameplate Capacity

Kitco News

Resolute Mining’s Syama Underground Mine in Mali achieved commercial production at rates greater than 80% of nameplate capacity, the company announced on Thursday.

Resolute said it is targeting site production of 300,000oz of gold annually with an all-in-sustaining-cost of about US$750/oz. Production work at the mine began last year when Resolute commenced sub-level caving in December.

Resolute (ASX:RSG) was up 4.5% today to A$1.26 (88 cents U.S.).

Syama will be the world’s first fully-automated underground gold mine, according to the company.

"The commissioning of the Syama Underground Automation System is now well underway with operators in the newly completed surface control room able to control underground production units over shift-change, blasting and re-entry periods, when there are no personnel in the underground mine," said the company in a news release.

"This represents the initial delivery of one of the main benefits of automation."

Syama also has the world’s first fully-automated haulage loop using a mix of laser-based underground navigation to surface-based differential global positioning system for navigation.

"The next phase of automation work will see the commissioning of the 1055 haulage level with automated rehandle loaders and haulage trucks working together to load from an ore pass and truck directly to the surface ROM pad.

"With the fans, pump stations, control room and communications network complete, the automation project is being progressively handed over to the operations team which is now at normal operational manning levels."

Image of control room courtesy of Resolute Mining
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