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Xstrata Technology appoints Aurecon to design new Albion Process plant in Armenia


20 February 2012 - Aurecon has been engaged by Xstrata Technology to provide civil and structural designs for an Albion Process™ plant at GeoProMining Gold LLC’s Ararat gold extraction facility in Armenia.

Following the launch of the GPM Gold Project at the company’s Ararat gold extraction plant in July 2011, GeoProMining Gold LLC (GPM) will commence with the construction of a new Albion Process plant at the facility in early 2012.

The unique Albion Process gold ore processing technology delivers the dual benefits of significantly increased gold recovery rates through the treatment of sulphide ores and minimised environmental impact.

This will be the fourth implementation of this processing technology developed by Xstrata Technology (Australia), following the successful implementation of two zinc Albion Process plants in Spain and Germany, as well as the Las Lagunas refractory gold plant in the Dominican Republic.

The decision to build this plant, at a planned cost of USD 100 million over the next three years, underpins GPM’s commitment to ongoing investment in the Armenian mining sector through the modernisation of its Ararat Gold Recovery Factory. The modernisation programme adheres to strict international environmental standards.

Aurecon will provide detailed design of foundations as well as concrete and steel structures for the Albion Process plant, which includes equipment such as an IsaMill™ grinding circuit and hydrometallurgical recovery via Albion Leach Reactors.

Mike Hourn, Albion Process Manager for Xstrata Technology said: “Aurecon has been providing Xstrata Technology with excellent support on the GPM Gold Project, both in the initial feasibility study and throughout the detailed design phase. Aurecon has a flexibility that you don’t usually associate with a large engineering firm, and this has been critical in the design of the Albion Process plant within a large brownfields complex”.

“Having worked with Xstrata Technology on the pre-feasibility design for the new Albion plant we are thrilled to be selected again to complete the detailed design. Xstrata’s Albion Process is gaining momentum in the industry and provides a step change in process simplicity and low cost technology for refractory gold and low grade base metal concentrates,” said Dan Curry, Aurecon Development Leader, Resources.

Following the planned completion of the project in 2013, GPM’s goal is to produce 4.5 tons of gold in Armenia per annum.

GeoProMining is an international, diversified metals resource holding company with five operating assets in three resource-rich countries. The company strategy aims to build on existing operations, taking advantage of significant opportunities for growth through brownfield expansion, greenfield exploration, new mine development and resource expansion.


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