VANCOUVER, Feb. 4, 2014 /CNW/ - Copper Mountain Mining Corporation (TSX: CUM) (the "Company" or "Copper Mountain") announces that construction of the secondary crusher at the Copper Mountain mine located in southern British Columbia is now underway on schedule. The main components of the crusher are now on a ship being transported to eastern Canada for transportation to the mine site. The total cost of construction for the secondary crusher is estimated to be approximately $40 million and construction is expected to be complete by midsummer. Once installed, 100% of the mill feed will be sized to the 2 inch range. Plant operating results with minus 2 inch material has confirmed that the mill operates at its designed capacity of 35,000 tpd on a consistent basis.
Short term mitigating measures implemented in 2013 to increase mill throughput have proven to be successful. These temporary measures include increased powder factor in the blasting of ore and the addition of three portable crushers. These short term improvements have proven to enhance mill productivity and are shown in the graphs below. At the start of 2013, SAG mill throughput averaged 24,900 tpd, but with the additions of the small portable crushing plants ahead of the SAG mill, average mill productivity increased to 32,767 tpd by year end.
Likewise, mill operating time improved from 86% in the first quarter to 90% in the fourth quarter with December averaging 95%. The combination of improved mill productivity and increased mill operating time resulted in increased copper production quarter over quarter as noted in the graph below.
To view graph click here: http://files.newswire.ca/596/CopperMountainGraph.pdf
In 2013 the mine produced 66.2 million pounds of copper, 21.6 thousand ounces of gold, and 320.4 thousand ounces of silver. The mill averaged 87.8% operating time for the year and a total of 10.1 million tonnes of ore was milled at an average grade of 0.35 % Copper.
Mill throughput is forecast to be 32,000 tpd for the first six months of 2014 and 35,000 tpd after the new permanent crusher is operational. December and January operational results are in line with the production forecasts. Forecast average copper head grade and production for the year is approximately 0.375 % and 80 to 90 million pounds respectively.
About Copper Mountain Mining Corporation:
Copper Mountain's flagship asset is the Copper Mountain mine located in southern British Columbia near the town of Princeton. The Company has a strategic alliance with Mitsubishi Materials Corporation who owns 25% of the mine. The Copper Mountain mine commenced production in the summer of 2011 and has continued to improve its operations since startup. The 18,000 acre site has a large resource of copper that remains open laterally and at depth. The mine has significant exploration potential that will need to be explored over the next few years to fully appreciate the properties full development potential. Additional information is available on the Company's web page at www.CuMtn.com.
On behalf of the Board of
COPPER MOUNTAIN MINING CORPORATION
Jim O'Rourke, P.Eng.
Chief Executive Officer
Note: This release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements may differ materially from actual future events or results. Readers are referred to the documents, filed by the Company on SEDAR at www.sedar.com, specifically the most recent reports which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements. The Company undertakes no obligation to review or confirm analysts' expectations or estimates or to release publicly any revisions to any forward-looking statement.
SOURCE: Copper Mountain Mining Corporation
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