Century Mine

Century Mine was a large open cut zinc, lead and silver mine at Lawn Hill, 250 km (160 mi) northwest of Mount Isa in North West Queensland, Australia. It was Australia's largest open pit zinc mine. Discovered by CRA Limited, mining was initiated by Pasminco, continued by Zinifex, then OZ Minerals and then MMG Limited who mined the project until closure. The property is currently owned by New Century Resources whose primary business is tailings reprocessing.[1]

Century Mine
Location
LocationLawn Hill
StateQueensland
CountryAustralia
Production
ProductsLead and zinc concentrates
History
Discovered1990
Opened1999 (1999)
Closed2015
Owner
CompanyCRA Limited (1990–1997)
Pasminco (1997–2004)
Zinifex (2004–2008)
OZ Minerals (2008–2009)
MMG Limited (2009–2017)
New Century Resources (2017–

HistoryEdit

The Century zinc deposit was discovered by CRA Limited in 1990 on Waanyi land.[2] Development of the mine commenced in 1997.[3] The mine began open-pit production in 1999.[4]

Open-pit mining was completed at Century in August 2015, with final processing of Century-sourced ore occurring in November 2015.[5][6] The last ore to be processed at Century was 450,000 tonnes that had been mined as part of the Dugald River mine's stoping trial, and then trucked to Century. The processing of this ore was completed in January 2016.[7] The final shipment of zinc concentrate was exported from Karumba in late January 2016.[8]

During its 16 years of operation, Century was one of the largest zinc mines in the world, producing and processing an average of 475,000 tpa of zinc concentrate and 50,000 tpa of lead concentrate. Mill tailings generated from 16 years of operations from the Century open pit forms a Proven Reserve of 77.3 million tonnes at 3.1% zinc-equivalent, for 2,287,000 tonnes of contained zinc.[9]

New Century Resources, an Australian base metals development company, restarted Century Mine operations from August 2018 extracting zinc from the tailings.[9]

OperationsEdit

Zinc and lead concentrates are exported via the port at Karumba on the Gulf of Carpentaria. The zinc ore is especially prized because of its low iron content, producing a high quality clean zinc concentrate that is keenly sought by the world's zinc smelters.[10] The concentrate is mixed with water and transported to the port by a 304 km (189 mi) pipeline.[11]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Century Mine Project". New Century Resources. Archived from the original on 28 February 2020. Retrieved 28 February 2020.
  2. ^ Cook, Fred (1996). "Sale of the Century Zinc Project". Canberra: Parliamentary Library. Archived from the original on 18 May 2019. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  3. ^ "Infrastructure". Minmetals Resources. Archived from the original on 12 May 2012. Retrieved 31 July 2012.
  4. ^ "Century". MMG Limited. Archived from the original on 8 August 2012. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  5. ^ "Mining completed at MMG Century mine". MMG Limited. Archived from the original on 21 December 2016. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  6. ^ "Century". MMG Limited. Archived from the original on 8 August 2012. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  7. ^ "Century". MMG Limited. Archived from the original on 8 August 2012. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  8. ^ "Australia's largest open-cut zinc mine ships final load from Karumba amid questions on legacy of landmark native title agreement". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 21 December 2016. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  9. ^ a b "Geology & Resources". New Century Resources. Melbourne. Archived from the original on 3 August 2020. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  10. ^ "Century". Minmetals Resources. Archived from the original on 8 August 2012. Retrieved 31 July 2012.
  11. ^ "Century mine pipe replacement to take 2-3 weeks". Business Spectator. 26 October 2009. Archived from the original on 24 August 2020. Retrieved 31 July 2012.

Coordinates: 18°43′32″S 138°36′27″E / 18.72556°S 138.60750°E / -18.72556; 138.60750