Vista Gold Corp told the press that the company will provide an update on activities underway at its Mt. Todd Project in the Northern Territory, Australia. The Company is currently conducting technical programs that management expects will lead to the completion of a preliminary feasibility study by the end of the year.
Part of this year’s program is a diamond core drilling program totaling approximately 7,000 meters in 14 holes to obtain further information about the size and quality of the mineral resource. The program is designed to increase the sampling density to support the conversion of inferred gold resources to measured and indicated resources at depth, and to explore for additional resources down dip. In a press release dated February 27, 2008, Vista reported an updated gold resource estimate including the results of a 25 hole program that resulted in an increase in measured resources(1) of 769,633 ounces of gold and an increase in indicated resources(1) of 367,686 ounces of gold resulting in a combined increase in measured and indicated resources(1) of 1,137,319 ounces of gold at a cut-off grade of 0.015 ounces of gold per ton.
A metallurgical test program is also designed to determine the processing parameters for the project. Initial test work by the Company indicated that it may be possible to recover the copper by flotation into a concentrate containing both gold and copper and by leaching the cleaner tail to recover gold, and subsequently, produce a gold bullion product. The Company is also investigating technology to reduce the cost and energy required to grind the hard Mt. Todd ore. Vista has recently completed a program with Polysius Corp., of Beckum, Germany, to evaluate the effectiveness of crushing and grinding of the ore using high pressure grinding roll (HPGR) technology compared with a conventional crushing, semi-autogenous grinding and ball mill grinding circuit. The results of this testing have been reviewed by Deepak Malhotra of Resource Development Inc. of Wheat Ridge, Colorado, a consulting metallurgist and qualified person. The tests indicate that the use of this technology in the crushing/grinding circuit has the potential to reduce energy requirements by approximately 9.5 kWhr/tonne, which at an estimated power cost of US$0.12 per kWhr represents a savings of US$1.14 per tonne treated, when compared to the use of a conventional crushing, SAG and ball mill grinding circuit. Metallurgical tests using samples generated from the HPGR tests have been completed, with assay results pending.
Since 2001, Vista has acquired a number of gold projects with the expectation that higher gold prices would significantly increase their value. For more information about our projects, including technical studies and resource estimates. Vista is undertaking programs to advance the Paredones Amarillos Project, including the preparation of a definitive feasibility study and the purchase of long delivery equipment items, so that construction can begin during the last quarter of 2008. The results of a preliminary assessment completed in 2007 on the Mt. Todd Project in Australia were encouraging and additional technical studies are underway, with a definitive feasibility study planned for completion by mid-2009. Vista’s other holdings include the Guadalupe de los Reyes Project in Mexico, the Yellow Pine Project in Idaho, the Awak Mas Project in Indonesia, and the Long Valley Project in California.
Source: Vista Gold Corp.