NWM provides Gold production and Lluvia de Oro mine update

TSX Venture Exchange
Symbol: NWM
Shares Outstanding: 402,069,593

TORONTO, April 28 /CNW/ -

Au Production

Gold production has begun from the newly-stacked heaps at Lluvia de Oro.  Leaching of Pads SW1 & SW2 is resulting in the gold extraction which was predicted, and is expected to yield a little over 1000 oz. Au by June 30.  Four new heaps are being stacked in coming months, so that total gold production by year-end 2011 should exceed 12,000 ounces Au.

Gold Pours

The ADR Plant and Refinery at Lluvia de Oro are recovering gold as expected.  The planned expansion of heap leach capacity during the remainder of 2011 will result in a requirement for expanded gold recovery circuits.  Expansions to each unit in the gold recovery circuit have been designed and budgeted, and are in the early stages of equipment procurement and construction.

Mine Preparation

During late 2010 and early 2011, major pre-stripping of ore reserves was accomplished at Lluvia de Oro.  This work has allowed the concurrent development of multiple ore mining zones.  As a result, ore stacking on new heaps is planned at over 250,000 tonnes per month from now until end of 2012.

Ore mined at Lluvia de Oro is being segregated into 4 grade ranges for optimal processing.

These grade ranges are:

High Grade 
Mid Grade 
Low Grade 
Sub Grade 


1.00 g/tonne Au, and higher
0.35 - 0.99 g/tonne Au
0.20 - 0.35
0.10 - 0.19

Heap Leach Pad Preparation

Four cells on Pads SW1 & SW2 are now under leach and delivering pregnant solution to the ADR Plant. Two more cells will be loaded with ore from the Creston Pit during May and June. Pads SW1 & SW2 will have a total of 800,000 tonnes of Mid Grade MG ore under leach by August.

Pads 7, 8 & 9 are being prepared for new ore delivery which is expected to commence in July. Leaching on Pads 7, 8 & 9 will commence in August.  These Pads will have 400,000 tonnes of Mid Grade MG ore under leach by November.

Construction is underway on the new Lluvia Dos Pad, which will have capacity for all Lluvia ore reserves currently known (design capacity is 45 million tonnes).  Two special lanes on this pad will be stacked to just 3 meters depth with High Grade (HG) ore (grades averaging 1.5 g/tonne Au). Crushing and Conveyor Stacking of HG ore will begin in late July, and leaching will begin in August.

One lane of the Lluvia Dos Pad will begin receiving Mid Grade (MG) ore in September. The MG ore will be stacked to a height of 10 meters.  A new lane for MG ore will be constructed every 4 months to match mine production output.

A large Pad for Low Grade (LG) ore will be completed by October. The tonnage of LG ore is significant at Lluvia, and a lower cost pad is planned for processing it, by Dump Leaching.  The Dump Leach Pad will hold 4 million tonnes of LG ore and will be stacked to a height of 35 meters.

Ounces Forecast

All Lluvia ore in the HG and MG classifications are part of the NI 43-101 compliant reserves reported in July 2010.  The NI 43-101 reserves include all ore stacked on Pad SW1 & SW2, Pads 7, 8 & 9, Pad HG and Pad MG.  These Pads are forecast to be stacked with 2 million tonnes of HG and MG ore during 2011.

If this Pad loading rate is achieved, the HG and MG ore stacked will contain 43,000 ounces Au, all part of the published NI 43-101 reserves.  Based on the leaching recovery rate projected in the NI 43-101 technical report of July 2010, over 10,000 ounces Au are forecast to be leached and recovered by year-end 2011.

Production Plans for 2011 - 2012 forecast more than 5 million tonnes of ore will be stacked and leaching by end of 2012, all from the published NI 43-101 reserves for Lluvia de Oro.  These ore tonnes will contain a total of approximately 100,000 ounces of gold.  Gold recovered and produced is thus forecast to be over 50,000 ounces by end of 2012.

Copper Control

Copper control at Lluvia de Oro and La Jojoba will be achieved by three methods (A, B & C), each independent and operating in sequence.

A. The first method is segregation of leach solutions by gold and copper content, so that each metal can be removed and recovered by distinct processes.  Blending of gold-rich and copper-rich solutions will be avoided by the leach pad design and leaching sequence.

B. The second method is aggressive removal of copper within the gold plant, by addition of a series of extra process operations targeting the copper.  These extra operations occur in carbon adsorption, acid washing of carbon, cold stripping, electro-winning, sludge processing and refining.

C. The third method is a novel process called ASPN.  This stands for Acidification, Sulfidation, Precipitation, Neutralization.  It differs significantly from its cousin, the SART process.  It has two important features.  The first feature is the relative simplicity of the process, which leads to lower capital costs.  The second feature is the planned close proximity to the heaps producing the copper-rich solutions, which leads to lower operating costs.

Currently at Lluvia de Oro methods A and B are in use and operating.  These two methods are sufficient for Lluvia ores because they are relatively low in copper content.  Method C (ASPN) will be applied to Jojoba ores, which have a copper content 4 times greater than those of Lluvia ores.

Method C (ASPN) is currently being tested on site at Lluvia.  Copper precipitation from the gold-rich solutions has been demonstrated.  The ASPN process will soon be operating as a continuous-flow pilot-scale test, processing bleed streams from different heaps with varying ore characteristics.  During the pilot-scale testing phase, method A allows copper-rich solutions to be segregated for testwork and optimization of the ASPN process.

The full-scale application of the ASPN process is expected to be constructed and operating at least a year before Jojoba ores are being mined and leached.

On March 10, 2011 NWM provided a press release stating that it had terminated the lease to own arrangement for the BioteQ SART plant. BioteQ has launched a suit for damages and NWM disagrees with the BioteQ allegations and intends to defend against them vigorously.

This press release has been prepared by R. Bruce Thorndycraft, Chief Operating Officer for NWM Mining Corporation.


This news release includes "forward-looking information", as such term is defined in applicable securities laws. Forward-looking information includes, without limitation, the success of exploration activities, price outlooks, production expectations and other similar statements concerning anticipated future events, conditions or results that are not historical facts. These statements reflect management's current estimates, beliefs, intentions and expectations; they are not guarantees of future performance. The Company cautions that all forward looking information is inherently uncertain and that actual performance may be affected by a number of material factors, many of which are beyond the Company's control. Accordingly, actual future events, conditions and results may differ materially from the estimates, beliefs, intentions and expectations expressed or implied in the forward-looking information. Specific risks that may also occur are gold recovery circuits may be added at a slower rate than expected, parts may not be available or suitable, weather could impact on the rate of pad loading and leach solution application, ores may have higher levels of copper than expected, ore grades on the pads may be lower than expected.  All statements are made as of the date of this news release and the Company is under no obligation to update or alter any forward-looking information.

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 NWM Mining Corporation

For further information:

please contact NWM Mining Corporation at (416) 364-6799

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NWM Mining Corporation

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