Blackbird is suitable for underground bulk mining techniques and will share above and below ground infrastructure with Eagle’s Nest. It provides an opportunity for Noront to supply both the North American and Asian ferrochrome market.
Approximately $CDN 400-500 million in incremental capital is needed to develop the Blackbird mine site, along with $CDN 600-700 million to build a ferrochrome pelletizing & furnace complex. These estimates are based on production of 2 million tonnes of ore mined. This will create an ability to produce lumpy and high-grade concentrate lumpy at a cost of $CDN 40 – $50 per tonne (based on a 30% Cr2O3 cut-off grade. Concentrate >50% Cr2O3 recovery >80% produced between $75 – $85 per tonne.
Annual production between 300 kt and 600 kt of high carbon ferrochrome with grades in excess of 60% chrome between $0.60 – $0.70 USD lb of contained chrome.(included operating and sustaining capital) F.O.B. Thunder Bay (Port Facility)**
* Excludes transportation costs to Ferrochrome facility ** Includes transportation plus $15 million annual charge for toll road, power based on 5.5 cents Cdn. per kWh