Carrapateena is located in South Australia on the eastern margin of the Gawler Craton.
Carrapateena produced first concentrate in December 2019 following a three-year construction period and is targeting a 12 month ramp up period to achieve its full production rate of 4.25 Mtpa, provided the cave propagates as expected.
It is an underground sub-level cave operation with an estimated mine life of 20 years. A feasibility study is underway into the future expansion of the bottom half of the operation into a block cave.
During construction there were two main phases:
- Phase one Q3 2017 – Q1 2018: construction of the accommodation village and airstrip, and development of the dual access decline continues.
- Phase two Q2 2018 – Q4 2019: construction of above ground infrastructure, processing plant, tailings storage facility, western access road, power line and installation of the underground materials handling system.
Carrapateena is a copper-gold deposit hosted in a brecciated granite complex and is mostly chalcopyrite with a central high grade bornite zone. The deposit is shaped like a near vertical pipe and sits under approximately 500 metres of unmineralised rock cover. More information on Carrapateena geology can be found here.