This document provides an overview of the technical capability of BM&C. The strength of its services and key to the company’s success over the last sixteen years is the team of multi-disciplinary specialists, most of whom have been associated with the company since its inception. These experts have extensive knowledge and experience in both the local and overseas mining and processing industry, where most have operated in senior mine management positions.
Whilst BM&C has, on occasion, conducted activities offshore, i.e. Mine Designs on PT Arutmin’s coal mine in Indonesia and the Kajaran Cu-Mo mine in Armenia, however, most of the work has been conducted on the African continent, i.e. Angola (Diamonds), Botswana (Coal and Gold), Zambia (Coal, Copper and Cobalt), Egypt (Gold), Tanzania (Coal), Nigeria (Coal and Base Metals), Madagascar (Coal and Gold) and Sierra Leon (Gold and Diamonds). Being a South African company, the majority of BM&C’s activities have been in South Africa, where BM&C has provided successful operational and consulting services for a variety of mining ventures in a wide spectrum of minerals, namely those in the Fossel Fuel, Base Metal, Precious Metal and Gemstone categories. Referees regarding the capabilities of BM&C to complete technical studies may be sought from the list provided in our Portfolio.
Types of Studies
The life cycle of a mining project can be divided into the following phases:
BM&C uses its high level of engineering and management skills to address all phases of the typical mine life cycle. A variety of technical studies are executed to complete the Exploration and Assessment phases. These studies include exploration programmes, scoping studies, pre- as well as final feasibility/bankable studies and engineering studies that will be concluded prior to the Development Phase to justify the continued investment in the project.
It is important to note that the preliminary evaluations on any prospective target area occur before the Scoping Study. These analyses, which consider likely costs and revenues for conceptual targets, may be completed before exploration commences or may, in fact, run in parallel with the first exploration programme.
The establishment of a mine then takes place with the implementation of the Development and Construction phases of the mines life cycle. The completion of these two phases sees the end of most of the capital expenditure and leads on to the Production phase. The Production phase is when the routine mining operations are in full swing. The mine eventually enters the Closure phase when the resource is depleted and mining operations must stop. Mine Closure entails the rehabilitation of the disturbed area to a condition that allows land use similar to that prior to mining taking place.
Unfortunately BM&C is restrained from divulging details of actual studies and investigations by Confidentiality Agreements with clients.
An exploration programme must be designed to secure sufficient grade and structural data to support the level of study to be completed. The initial drill intercepts will give some indication of the potential size and grade of the target area. It is for this reason exploration programmes are often phased to minimize risk. Once the initial programme has been completed and indications are that a full assessment of the area is warranted, the drilling programme may be expanded to increase the exploration area and infill holes drilled to decrease the grid spacing.
BM&C geologists have planned and managed numerous exploration programmes for coal, gold, diamonds and other minerals.
Scoping studies are based on very limited information or speculative assumptions in the absence of hard data. The study is generally directed at the potential of the property rather than a conservative view based on limited information. BM&C has been involved, with a variety of clients, in many studies of this nature.
The important stage of Pre-feasibility Study follows the first phase of surface exploration drilling and the estimation of a resource model. The main features of this study are:
Mine design based on a resource model,
- Preliminary geo-technical, environmental and infrastructural studies,
- Bench scale metallurgical tests and preliminary plant design,
- Cost estimates based on factored or comparative prices,
- Study accuracy between 15% and 25%, and
- Decision to proceed on major exploration and final feasibility study.
- The measure of a successful Pre-feasibility Study is the attraction a buyer, joint venture partner or suitable investor.
- This important phase of any investigative procedure has been completed on many gold, platinum, diamond, coal and base metal target areas by BM&C.
Final Feasibility Studies/Bankable Documents
BM&C has completed several Final Feasibility Studies on a variety of mineral projects, where the main objectives were to:
· Demonstrate within reasonable levels of confidence that the project construction and operation phases can take place in a technically sound and economically viable manner,
· Provide a basis for detailed design and construction,
· Enable the raising of finance for the project from banks and other sources.
The Final Feasibility Study provides a basis for a commitment to proceed with project development, detailed design and construction.
Due Diligences and Mine Evaluations
BM&C has completed a wide variety of Due Diligences and Mine Evaluations at the request of financial Institutions and interested investors. The main purpose of these investigations is to establish a fair price for what may be an operating mine or other mining resource.
Mining Right Applications
Preparation of Mine design/schedule, EIA, EMP, Social & Labour Plans and relevant Capex and Opex models. BM&C has considerable experience in the preparation of these applications.
The level of engineering design attained in the Feasibility Study is usually well short of that require for construction, so a further period of engineering design follows. This usually continues during construction and only tapers off when production is imminent.
The Development phase of detailed engineering design is commenced prior to mobilization on site and the start up of construction activities. This includes the final design of surface and underground infrastructure, mine access, mining method and equipment, power and water reticulation and many more engineering related structures.
The Construction phase is closely linked to the EPCM (Engineering/Design, Procurement/Quality Control, Construct and Manage) function, which generally establishes management and administrative control over the site construction activities. BM&C has successfully managed this EPCM function on numerous projects.
BM&C has found that there mining companies that do not have the technical capacity to operate the mine themselves or to managing the transition from construction to production. In such instances BM&C has secured the services of mining contractors and processing plant contractors and provided management and technical services. The management and technical services can either be outsourced or be provided from BM&C skills pool. These may include mine management, engineering, metallurgy, surveying, ventilation, safety and health, rock engineering, etc.
BM&C has the capacity to provide environmental specialists experienced in the implementation of rehabilitation programmes that will satisfy the authorities.
On any single project BM&C undertakes the activities with a multi-disciplinary team consisting of BM&C staff, all of whom have been associated with the company over many years.
These experts have extensive knowledge of both the local and overseas mining industries.
Management of the studies is generally under the control of one of the directors of BM&C, whose responsibility includes providing direction to said consultants as well as monitoring and controlling their deliverables and expenses. BM&C have, on numerous projects, gathered wide experience in fulfilling this role.
Our Portfolio clearly summarises similar work completed by the BM&C during the past decade.
A project of this nature cannot be completed in isolation and provision is made in the resource structure to facilitate interaction between client, consultant and other resources, related to the project scope of work.
A sample of the Curriculum Vitaes of BM&C employees may be viewed under the Team menu.