The studies are part of a broader optimisation program that is designed to reduce civil works and maximise site-specific advantages.
Engineers from four companies participated, representing a multi-disciplinary cross-section of leading international experts, and strategies were developed to simplify project construction and reduce associated capital costs.
Information gathered by the engineering groups will feed into the broader program that will see design revisions to civil construction and port and plant sites.
This will substantially reduce civil earth works and amounts of imported construction materials.
Reports are now being prepared that will update designs and capital costs for specific areas of the project.
Engineering groups that participated were: PND Engineers, from the USA; Nuna Logistics, from Canada; Tetra Tech, based in California; and China Communications Construction Co Ltd, China’s largest engineering and construction company.
Following the on-site investigation, the engineering groups confirmed that the construction of Kvanefjeld had no major impediments and would be relatively straightforward, owing to a number of site-specific advantages which include:
Infrastructure benefits including port and fuel storage;
Local labour available from the early construction phase and into mine development;
High-quality construction-suitable rock material on-site, to be used for roads, culverts, and other construction;
Year-round shipping access for fuels, construction material and labour; and
Winters on the southern tip of Greenland are not exceptionally cold, allowing for year-round construction.
The company finalised Kvanefjeld’s pre-feasibility in 2012 and a comprehensive feasibility study was completed in 2015, which was updated after pilot plant operations in 2016.
The studies highlight the potential to develop Kvanefjeld as a long-life, low-cost and large-scale producer of rare earth elements, key enablers to the electrification of transport systems.
Greenland Minerals aims to become a supplier of the key magnet metals neodymium, praseodymium, dysprosium and terbium.