WA’s Maitland SIA: A Hub of Innovation and Sustainable Growth
In a significant development, the Western Australian Government has designated specific land…
9 August 2023
Pilbara Minerals, a prominent player in the mining sector, has achieved a significant milestone with its Pilgangoora mine in Western Australia. This mine has now claimed the title of being the world’s largest hard-rock lithium mine, surpassing even Greenbushes, a notable contender in the industry.
Sitting proudly in Western Australia, the Pilgangoora lithium mine belongs entirely to Pilbara Minerals, a well-established name in the field. A recent update from the company highlighted the successful conclusion of their drilling program for the 2023 fiscal year. The outcomes of this program have led to an impressive 36 percent increase, equivalent to 109,000 tonnes, in the mineral resource of the site. The measured and indicated portions of this resource make up an impressive 82 percent of the total.
This achievement places Pilgangoora ahead of Greenbushes in terms of overall resource size, a mine jointly owned by Tianqi Lithium and Albemarle. Although Greenbushes boasts a higher lithium oxide grade, Pilgangoora’s resource upgrade solidifies its position as a global powerhouse in the hard rock lithium sector.
Dale Henderson, the Managing Director and CEO of Pilbara Minerals, expressed his enthusiasm about this accomplishment. He emphasized the alignment of this resource upgrade with the company’s strategic growth plan. The focus remains on maximizing the value of Pilgangoora’s world-class operation. Henderson proudly stated, “We have added 109,000 tonnes of additional mineral resource at a direct exploration cost of only 13 cents per tonne of additional resource – an outstanding result.”
Looking forward, Pilbara Minerals is actively exploring mid-stream lithium production opportunities. Recent developments have seen the company’s board approving a partnership with Calix for the construction of a demonstration plant. This initiative aims to investigate the feasibility of producing mid-stream lithium phosphate.
Henderson, reflecting on these developments, shared his anticipation for the road ahead. He revealed, “Following further studies and pilot test work, we are delighted to be taking the next step in our mid-stream strategy with the construction and operation of a mid-stream demonstration plant with our JV partner Calix.”
With plans to complete an updated ore reserve in the current quarter, Pilbara Minerals is poised to set the foundation for its operations in the years to come. The potential for expansion beyond the current capacity is also on the horizon, demonstrating the company’s commitment to continuous growth and innovation.