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Cobalt Blue higher as underground development starts at Broken Hill Cobalt Project to support large-scale demonstration plant – Proactive Investors USA

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00:58 Wed 23 Mar 2022
Cobalt Blue attracts interest for cobalt samples produced at Broken Hill Pilot Plant
“Last year, our successful Pilot Plant opened the door to new partners. These large-scale demonstration plant cobalt samples are a game-changer for COB, providing operating proof for project equity/debt funders and simultaneously providing high-quality production scale samples for commercial partners,” says CEO.
Cobalt Blue Holdings Ltd (ASX:COB, OTC:CBBHF) has begun underground development work at the Broken Hill Cobalt Project (BHCP) in Far West New South Wales to provide bulk ore samples to support the operation of a large-scale demonstration plant.
The company has successfully established the development site at the Pyrite Hill deposit at the mine project west of Broken Hill with the first blast completed and excavation of the box cut well advanced.
Underground development will provide 3,500-4,000 tonnes of ore from Pyrite Hill to support 20 weeks of continuous operation of the Demonstration Plant which is being established in Broken Hill and follows a successful pilot plant operation.
Installation of the decline portal at Pyrite Hill will begin shortly. This will extend about 80 metres and intersect with the ore body approximately 40 metres below surface.

Initial blast to advance excavation of the Pyrite Hill box cut.
Two underground development drives will provide access laterally to the cobalt-pyrite mineral resource and allow representative samples to be obtained.
This is important to ensure that unbiased engineering data is generated from the Demonstration Plant for the BHCP Feasibility Study.
The Demonstration Plant will provide proof of project and high-quality production scale samples for potential offtake partners around the world.
It is designed to complete two main activities. Firstly, mined ore will be crushed, milled and treated to produce a cobalt-pyrite concentrate at the mine site. Secondly, the concentrate will then be trucked to the processing plant in Broken Hill for extraction and recovery of cobalt as mixed hydroxide precipitate and/or cobalt sulphate.
Milling and concentrator equipment is being commissioned in Broken Hill ahead of being relocated to mine site, with first ore processing on target for late April.
“Demonstration Plant activities are coming together nicely with mining underway and processing equipment being received,” Cobalt Blue CEO Joe Kaderavek said.
“Last year, our successful Pilot Plant opened the door to new partners.
“These large-scale demonstration plant cobalt samples are a game-changer for COB, providing operating proof for project equity/debt funders and simultaneously providing high-quality production scale samples for commercial partners.
“Well done to the COB team.”
This update saw COB’s share price increase as much as 15.4% to A$0.90 intraday, a new high of almost four years. Recent newsflow and strong cobalt market fundamentals have seen the company’s share price increase from $0.43 at market close on February 24 while the market cap is approximately A$267.47 million.

Commissioning of the demonstration plant float cell.
COB’s 2021 Pilot Plant is being upgraded from 40 kilograms per hour capacity to 125 kilograms per hour.
Key equipment is arriving at site – larger leach vessels, oxygen and nitrogen plants, and kiln and sulphur recovery equipment – to be installed across March and into April, with the plant expected to be ready in early May.
Trials and commissioning of individual processing circuits are ongoing. Recent work has focused on optimisation of the solvent extraction separation of cobalt as part of the refining of Mixed Hydroxide Precipitate (MHP) into high purity cobalt sulphate.

Cobalt solvent extraction.
Cobalt Blue has designed its strategy around maximising payable cobalt while participating in the growth of the lithium-ion battery market.
Unlike traditional methods, COB’s integrated refinery model is capable of delivering an intermediate mixed hydroxide product, which can then be further refined into battery-grade cobalt sulphate. The flowsheet is shown below:

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Cobalt Blue Holdings Ltd (ASX:COB, OTC:CBBHF)'s CEO Joe Kaderavek speaks to Proactive soon after announcing they've adopted a global framework to help assess and implement best-practice standards when it comes to cobalt production. He also talks through an updated mineral resource estimate for…
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