Development of the Argo Mine

Organization: The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 7
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1986
Peko Mines, a Division of Peko-Wallsend Operations Limited (PWOL) has operated several small underground mines in the Tennant Creek district of the Northern Territory supplying ore to a central treatment plant. The Argo Mine is the most recently developed by Peko Mines. A magnetic anomaly was identified from low level airborne magnetics in 1960 and drilling, which commenced on the site in 1969, was halted in 1974 and resumed in 1980 following the rise in the price of gold. By mid 1983 a resource of + 200 000 tonnes of 12 g/tonne Au had been outlined and a decision to develop the resource was taken following the drilling of three further diamond drill holes which did not significantly alter the value of the resource. The small size of the orebody could not support the full capital cost of two shafts and a single entry mine plan was developed to extract the ore at a rate of 15 000 tonnes per month and to provide all the safety features, ventilation systems and services of a two shaft mine. In December 1983 a contract was let to Allied Constructions Pty. Limited (Allied) to sink and equip a 4.8m shaft to a depth of 410m and to convert the headframe and winder, which are leased for the life of the mine by PWOL from Allied, from a sinking to a production configuration. Shaft equipment designed by Hardcastle & Richards Pty. Ltd. (H & R) in conjunction with PWOL includes a skip/cage, counter- weight, and an auxiliary cage on rope guides, a sealed ladderway and exhaust air ducts.
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