Namib Lead Mine – Namibia

Namib Lead Mine – Namibia

The Namib Lead Mine is located near Swakopmund, western Namibia. Its previous owners asked us to assess the potential for re-opening mine workings, and to develop a conceptual processing flowsheet. Capital and operating cost estimates for mining and processing were to be included as part of the study. 

We visited the site to review the existing processing equipment and infrastructure to see if it could be re-used. After gathering the data we needed, we returned to the UK to evaluate the project – initially reviewing the historical testwork data as the first step to developing a conceptual processing route. We then produced design criteria to progress early engineering design work on the sizing of equipment – incorporating conventional crushing, grinding and flotation technologies to produce separate lead and zinc concentrates.

The plant was designed to treat 309,000t of either run-of-mine ore or reclaimed tails per year. Of the two feed streams, the ROM ore had the highest head grades as well as the highest comminution requirement. We therefore based the sizing of plant equipment on this feed stream. Finally, we determined capital and operating costs by contacting various reagent and equipment suppliers and drawing on our experience of similar projects.