Fuel cycle roundup #19

17 January 2014

More U at Manyingee

Revised mineral resource estimates for Paladin Energy's Manyingee project in Western Australia show a slight reduction in indicated and an increase in inferred resources, with indicated resources now standing at 15.7 million pounds U3O8 (6039 tU) and inferred resources at 10.2 million pounds U3O8 (3923 tU). The overall grade of the deposit has increased to 850 ppm U3O8 (0.085% U3O8) due to revised geological modelling and estimation techniques.

Manyingee is scheduled to be Paladin's next new project development, but the company says it will not consider developing it until uranium prices are "sufficiently incentivising".

African projects refinanced

Paladin Energy has agreed a refinancing package for its Langer Heinrich (Namibia) and Kayelekera (Malawi) uranium facilities that will see its debt repayments reduce by $59 million over 2014 and 2015. According to Paladin, the move will provide cash flow benefits to both projects while strengthening the company's overall financial position. The new finance facility is being provided by South African and Namibian banks.

Nichols Ranch gearing up

Two deep disposal wells for the removal of non-hazardous liquids have been completed at Uranerz Energy's Nichols Ranch in-situ leach (ISL) project in Wyoming, USA. The wells must be operational before uranium recovery operations can begin. Uranerz anticipates that a final pre-operation inspection by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission will be completed in time for uranium production to begin in the first quarter of 2014.

PEA for Peruvian project

Toronto-based Macusani Yellowcake has filed a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for its uranium deposits in Peru with the Canadian security regulators' SEDAR system. The company's uranium projects in the Puno District of south-eastern Peru have NI43-101 compliant measured and indicated resources estimate of 31.5 million pounds U3O8 (12,116 tU) and inferred resources of 30.1 million pounds U3O8 (11,578 tU). Production costs are estimated at $20.57 per pound U3O8, for output of an average 4.3 million pounds U3O8 (1654 tU) per year over a ten-year mine life.

Macusani CEO Laurence Stefan said the PEA showed the project had the potential to be "one of the lowest cost uranium producers in the world". He said that the company intends to begin a pre-feasibility study during 2014.

Fuel contract for Hanhikivi

Russia's TVEL has signed a contract with Fennovoima to supply nuclear fuel and related services for the Hanhikivi nuclear power plant, to be built in Finland. The contract, worth over €450 million ($611 million) covers the initial core for the Russian-design AES-2006 VVER pressurized water reactor plus reloads for the first ten years of operations.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News