Source - Alliance News

Ironveld PLC on Tuesday celebrated first metal production from the Rustenburg smelter complex, following refurbishment of a furnace earlier in the year.

Ironveld is a Caerphilly, Wales-based mining company. In 2022, Ironveld agreed to acquire and refurbish a smelter facility in Rustenburg, South Africa.

Cold commissioning of machinery began at Rustenburg in December, accompanied by hot commissioning of the first furnace.

Since then, the furnace has smelted test quantities of magnetite ore for the production of marketable high purity iron and titanium slag, it said.

Initial analysis of the iron confirms that it meets planned quality and content specifications. Both commissioning and mining processes are progressing ahead of schedule, Ironveld noted.

In the coming weeks, the company intends to extend operations at the first furnace to include the production of vanadium slag.

It added that production sales are still in line to be achieved by the second quarter, as planned.

Meanwhile, work at the second and third furnaces continues. Both are expected to enter production by April 2023.

Once all three furnaces are operational, the complex will be capable of producing 20,000 tonnes of high purity iron; 190 tonnes of vanadium in slag; and 3,800 tonnes of titanium in slag per annum.

‘Our aim is to create a sustainable, socially and environmentally responsible operation that will prove to be rewarding for all stakeholders. Today’s news that Ironveld Smelting has successfully smelted ore into marketable metal products in the first operating furnace is a fantastic achievement for the whole Ironveld team,’ said Chief Executive Officer Martin Eales.

‘We anticipate first revenues from initial production comfortably in line with our original expectation of Q2 2023. We will be issuing further updates as the phased recommissioning process at Rustenburg continues.’

Ironveld shares were trading 17% higher at 0.30 pence each in London on Tuesday afternoon.

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