Afferro Mining Inc. - Potential to Reduce Processing Capital Expenditure and Operating Costs at Nkout

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LONDON, UK, Feb. 4, 2013 /CNW/ - Afferro Mining Inc. ("Afferro or the Company", TSX-V & AIM: AFF) is pleased to announce further excellent metallurgical testwork results from the Nkout Iron Ore Project ("Nkout"). Further to the press release of 17th December 2012, the company has now completed all of the original testwork. The results highlight the opportunity for significant savings in the combined processing of Direct Shipping Ore ("DSO") and saprolite resource and are consistent with the earlier testwork for the Magnetite Banded Iron Formation ("BIF").

Highlights:

Saprolite

  • Testwork has been designed to understand the potential of the saprolite component of NI 43-101 compliant resource:
    • 248mt Inferred at 35.0% iron
  • Results demonstrate that higher grade material can be beneficiated to a premium grade material
    • Samples grading 53% iron were beneficiated using simple attrition scrubbing to a product grade of 59-64%
  • Further testing underway to assess the potential to simplify saprolite and DSO processing
    • A significant reduction in capital expenditure ("Capex") and operating expenditure ("Opex") may be achievable from:
      • Saprolite circuit simplified by removal of milling
      • Integration of DSO and saprolite processing into a single combined circuit
      • Simple mechanical beneficiation of both DSO and saprolite
  • Further results expected by the end of Q1 2013

Magnetite BIF

  • Davis Tube wash testing on five composite samples were consistent with excellent early results:
    • Highly marketable sinter fines magnetite concentrate of 66-69% iron, with low deleterious elements achieved at a coarse grind size of 106µm for all composites
    • High 70-71% iron grade achieved at a pellet feed grind size
    • Tests designed to closely simulate full-scale plant performance and predict plant recovery and product grade. There is greater confidence in the scalability of the Davis Tube wash results than the previous Davis Tube recovery results
  • Pilot-scale testing of the five composites at 106µm, 125µm and 150µm grind sizes commenced in January 2013, with results expected by the end of Q1 2013

Afferro's CEO, Luis da Silva, commented:

"These outstanding results highlight one of the key attractions of Nkout- its metallurgy. Bench-scale testing of the 28t of material has been completed to schedule and confirms and increases confidence from earlier results. We feel this sets Nkout apart from other projects in the region.

Work on the saprolite resource is encouraging. There is the potential to combine saprolite and DSO processing to deliver significant Opex and Capex improvements relative to the Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA"). Combining saprolite and DSO processing would result in a substantially less capital-intensive early phase production with significant upside to the Nkout economics. This is another area where there is upside to last year's PEA, enabling an early phase of production.

The BIF further supports the project economics. It is therefore very good news to have our positive early metallurgical results confirmed by a further five composite samples put through improved testing. Modelling this coarse grind size in further feasibility work should provide additional process cost savings from those assumed in the PEA. We look forward to the releasing of the results of the additional BIF and saprolite testing when they are completed."

BIF Metallurgical Results

Davis Tube Wash tests indicate a good concentrate grade and liberation at comparatively coarse particle size. The PFS BIF processing is expected to target a P80 in the 150 micron to 106 micron range. Deleterious elements in this size range are low. The following is an example of the results achieved from this work:

Davis Tube Wash Results summary for Comps 1 and 2

Comp Feed Grind Magnetic Concentrate
  Fe SiO2 P80 Mass
Rec.
Fe
Rec.
Fe SiO2 Al2O3 P
  (%) (%) (microns) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%)
NKMET 032 33.3 45.8 500 63.3 91.6 51.8 25.6 0.3 0.02
250 52.6 88.8 57.9 17.8 0.3 0.01
150 45.6 88.5 66.6 6.6 0.2 0.005
106 48.8 90.2 69.1 3.2 0.3 0.003
75 45.3 89.3 70.6 1.6 0.1 0.003
45 47.6 89.9 71.2 0.9 0.1 0.003
38 47.9 89.7 71.0 0.8 0.2 0.003
NKMET 034 33.9 44.4 500 61.6 91.1 52.4 24.7 0.2 0.017
250 56.3 90.8 59.8 15.2 0.2 0.011
150 48.9 89.2 65.9 7.7 0.1 0.007
106 46.8 89.4 69.0 3.6 0.1 0.005
75 46.0 89.4 70.6 1.6 0.1 0.003
45 42.1 87.6 71.4 0.8 0.1 0.003
38 42.4 87.3 71.4 0.9 0.1 0.003

Davis Tube Wash Results summary for Comps 3 and 4

Comp Feed Grind Magnetic Concentrate
  Fe SiO2 P80 Mass
Rec.
Fe
Rec.
Fe SiO2 Al2O3 P
  (%) (%) (microns) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%)
NKMET 035 33.5 45.1 500 59.0 83.0 47.5 30.3 0.6 0.024
250 50.3 88.6 59.8 15.2 0.2 0.011
150 37.6 72.3 63.3 10.2 0.6 0.011
106 35.5 72.0 67.8 5.2 0.2 0.007
75 38.3 74.5 69.4 2.8 0.1 0.007
45 38.3 74.2 70.9 1.1 0.1 0.005
38 33.5 70.1 71.2 1.1 0.1 0.005
NKMET 036 25.3 29.3 500 45.9 71.0 42.0 32.7 4.2 0.04
250 38.1 67.9 46.7 27.7 3.5 0.036
150 29.3 63.5 59.4 13.2 1.8 0.021
106 22.5 58.7 66.0 6.5 1.1 0.013
75 25.9 63.8 68.1 3.8 0.7 0.01
45 24.6 62.6 69.8 2.3 0.6 0.007
38 n/t          

Davis Tube Wash Results summary for Comp 5

Comp Feed Grind Magnetic Concentrate
  Fe SiO2 P80 Mass
Rec.
Fe
Rec.
Fe SiO2 Al2O3 P
  (%) (%) (microns) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%)
NKMET 038 31.4 45.8 500 75.6 88.9 35.9 42.2 2.0 0.041
250 46.0 78.4 52.4 23.6 0.9 0.022
150 39.8 79.4 66.0 7.6 0.3 0.008
106 38.2 78.8 68.6 4.2 0.2 0.005
75 33.4 76.1 70.3 2.1 0.2 0.003
45 33.0 75.7 71.2 1.1 0.2 0.003
38 37.7 79.2 71.2 1.1 0.2 0.003

About Afferro Mining Inc.

Afferro is an established exploration and development company listed on the TSX-V (AFF) and AIM (AFF).  Afferro's portfolio includes the 100% owned Nkout, Ntem and Akonolinga iron ore projects.  It also holds a 70% interest in the Ngoa project, an exploration target bordering Nkout.  Nkout comprises a National Instrument 43-101 ("NI 43-101") compliant Indicated Mineral Resource Estimate of 1.19Bt at 32.9% Fe and an Inferred Mineral Resource Estimate of 1.33Bt at 30.3% Fe.

Qualified Person

Howard Baker (MAusIMM(CP)) has 18 years' experience in the mining industry and 10 years' experience in the exploration, definition and mining of iron ore mineral resources.  Mr Baker is a full-time employee of SRK Consulting (UK) Ltd., an independent consultancy, and has sufficient experience which is relevant to the style of mineralisation and type of deposit under consideration, and to the type of activity which he is undertaking to qualify as a Qualified Person in accordance with NI 43-101 and a Competent Person as defined in the June 2009 Edition of the AIM Note for Mining and Oil & Gas Companies.  Howard Baker consents to the inclusion in the announcement of the matters based on their information in the form and context in which it appears and confirms that this information is accurate and not false or misleading.

Forward-looking Statements

This announcement includes certain forward-looking statements. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, included herein are forward-looking statements that involve various known and unknown risks and uncertainties as well as other factors. Such forward looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations, including delays in obtaining or failure to obtain required regulatory approvals. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.

Information about the risks and uncertainties of the Company's business is provided in its disclosure materials, including its Annual Information Form and its MD&A for the 12 months ended 31 December 2011, available under the Company's profile on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.  Factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations include but are not limited to:  exploration risks, the grade and recovery of ore which is mined varying from estimates; estimates of future production, mine development costs, timing of commencement of operations; changes in exchange rates; access to capital; fluctuations in commodity prices; and adverse political and economic developments in the countries in which we or our investments operate.  Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward looking information, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that forward looking information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such information. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. The forward-looking information contained herein, speaks only as of the date hereof (unless stated otherwise) and, except as may be required by applicable law, Afferro disclaims any obligation to update or modify such forward-looking statements, either as a result of new information, future events or for any other reason.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy of this release.

SOURCE: Afferro Mining Inc.

For further information:

Afferro Mining Inc.
Luis da Silva / Jeremy Cave
Tel:  +44 (0) 20 7010 7680

Investec
Nominated Adviser: Neil Elliot
Corporate Broker: Chris Sim
Tel:  +44 (0) 20 7597 5970

RBC Capital Markets
Joint Broker:  Martin Eales / Richard Hughes
Tel:  +44 (0) 20 7653 4000

Pelham Bell Pottinger
Daniel Thöle / James MacFarlane
Tel:  +44 (0) 20 7861 3232

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Afferro Mining Inc.

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