AUGUST • 2022
Jabal Sayid Project in Saudi Arabia
Ma’aden Barrick Copper Company (a 50/50 JV between Barrick and Ma’den) is committed in growing the Jabal Sayid operation into a Tier One Asset (500k oz gold/150MIlbs of copper), and to become a world class, long-term polymetallic mining operation.
Recently a new ore body known as Lode 1 has been included into the Life of Mine Plan. This has resulted in an additional 2900m of capital development in 2022 and 100k production tonnes per annum added to each mining year in the next two years. Further exploration is ongoing, with Lode 1 expected to increase in scale both for development and production requirements. More importantly, Lode 1 will supplement the ore supply from existing work areas and enable the operation to deliver 3M tonnes per annum.
Recent milestones achieved on the project have been:
- The noticeable increase in development metres per month, previously the project was averaging 170m/month, and now up to +390m/month is being achieve.
- Construction and setting up of underground workshop for minor repairs and daily services which has seen a significant reduction in unproductive tramming time for loaders and drills as they were previously required to tram to the surface workshop for maintenance.
- The completion of a rebuild facility where major components such as drifters, pumps and other rotables are refurbished on site, reducing the costs on repairs, freight and reducing turn-around times.
As part of the projects drive for continuous improvement, a decision was made to invest in a Transcale system which comprises of a truck load scanner, weigh bridge and truck analysis system. The system is under construction and will be integrated into LiveMine for accurate data recording, reporting and real time feedback to the operators to help improve truck load factors and productivities.
Jabal Sayid is one of Byrnecut’s first offshore sites to implement the LiveMine system, which utilises tablets to record the operators achieved physicals per shift and uploads the data to our production database. The long-term plan is to ensure all the activities completed underground are reported through LiveMine to streamline the recording process and remove the need for paper plod data capture.
The project continues to conduct surface loader remote activities utilising the RCT system, which has assisted in increasing loader productivities by bogging material during shift changes and blasting times.
An expansion of the underground communications system including Newtrax installation will allow the integration of mine control to further improve productivities.
Moses Kafunda, Project Manager for Jabal Sayid, says:
“The operation has been going well and for the last three consecutive years the team has achieved the client’s annual physicals targets. The year 2020 was particularly satisfying as the project delivered 2.6MT to the ROM against a plan of 2.5MT during the chaotic global pandemic of COVID where crews could not make it site and the ones on site had to work for over 7 months due to flight suspension into the Kingdom.
Due to the commencement of additional capital development for Lode 1, and the ongoing construction of the second paste line, we are actively recruiting additional employees for the works. Despite ongoing visa challenges caused by Embassies being short staffed, we expect to meet the required manning schedule in time to complete the planned second paste line reticulation.
At this project we are arguably the most diversified within the Byrnecut group and we’re proud of our workforce, who come from countries such as Egypt, Zambia, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, United Kingdom, Ireland, Philippines, Tanzania, Ghana and of course Saudi Arabia.
With the upcoming additional development, we are in the process of mobilising a new DD421-60C Jumbo, which is due to arrive on site in late Q3. And as we look to invest back into the project, we are considering the opportunity to upgrade the load and haul fleet with a new LH621i loader and TH663i truck to be mobilised in the back half of the year. Additionally, our existing load and haul fleet is currently undergoing scheduled midlife servicing, made easier by our upgraded rebuild facilities. This will ensure the fleet is more reliable as we continue to strive for the higher availabilities required to achieve our ore targets of 3.0MTPA.”