SHANGHAI, Jun. 29 -- First steps to develop the Heemskirk tin project in Tasmania have been announced by Stellar Resources. Stellar was forced to abandon an IPO of its subsidiary Columbus Metals in the global financial crisis of September 2009 which would have provided financing for exploration and development, but is now encouraged to re-start work on a feasibility study.
A drilling programme will focus on the shallow Queen Hill tin deposit, infilling historical drilling where the drilling density is lowest, in a zone between the surface and a depth of 120 m. In addition to refining the mineralised envelope in an area that could be evaluated for low-cost development, the results are expected to allow Stellar to upgrade the historical data base to improve the basis for a modern JORC-compliant mineral resource estimate for the Queen Hill deposit. Stellar's joint venture partner is Gippsland Ltd. Stellar's subsidiary Columbus Metals has the right to increase its ownership to 70% by completing a feasibility study.
Queen Hill and associated deposits have a total (non-JORC) resource of some 50,000 tonnes contained tin and Stellar is contemplating a a 500,000 tpy ore capacity underground mine capable of producing 3,500 – 4,500 tpy of tin-in-concentrate.