Altura’s dedicated commissioning team has completed wet commissioning of the crushing circuit and stockpiled, crushed ore is now available to feed into the processing plant.

The entire commissioning phase is scheduled for completion by the end of June 2018 at which time the operation will be ramped up towards full throughput capacity. The Company is working to a timetable which remains on track for first lithium concentrate production in Q2 2018 and first shipment in July 2018.

The key milestones for commissioning the remainder of the plant are as follows:

– Main power plant turned on 1 June 2018

– HPGR commissioning

– Ball Mill commissioning

– Dense Media Separation Modules commissioning

– Classification circuit

– Product upgrade and load out circuits

In conjunction with the commissioning activities that have been occurring over the past few months, site management have been assembling the plant operations and maintenance teams in line with the Owner Operator model that has been adopted.

Altura Managing Director Mr James Brown said: “The commissioning milestone marks a significant step for the Altura team. We have to remember this was a greenfields site that required the procurement and installation of all site infrastructure. I am very confident of our team’s ability to commission a processing plant with both dense media separation and flotation circuits and transform us into a producer.”

Further market updates will be provided as the operation moves towards its Stage 1 production target of 220,000 tpa of 6% grade Li2O.

The Board intends to make a Final Investment Decision on the Stage 2 expansion project work before the end of the financial year which, if approved, will provide a continuous workfront for the Stage 1 project team to transition to.