Atlas Iron Limited (ASX Code: AGO) has announced a 50 percent increase in its direct shipping ore (DSO) reserves, to 79.3 metric tons at 57.8% Fe, from its North Pilbara Projects.
Company statements released in the ASX said the increase has taken into account the depletion from mining in the past 12 months in the area.
The North Pilbara projects comprise the Pardoo and Wodgina mining operations as well as the Mt Dove, Abydos, Mt Webber and McPhee Creek development projects.
Atlas is now exporting consistently at a rate of 6Mtpa and is targeting a ramp up to an export rate of 12mtpa by December 2012, as it commences mining at its other North Pilbara projects being Mt Dove, Abydos and Mt Webber.
- 50% INCREASE IN RESERVES**
- LOW ALUMINA PRODUCT
- ADDITIONAL DRILLING UNDERWAY
- RESERVES UNDERWRITING SIGNIFICANT INCREASES IN NORTH PILBARA MINE LIFE
The Reserves have been estimated in compliance with the JORC Code, the company added.
"Atlas is now an established iron ore producer and exporter with strong customer relationships. The company has achieved significant growth in resources and reserves in the same period where we expanded production by 600%" Managing Director David Flanagan said. "The whole team are to be congratulated on a brilliant result."
Atlas is continuing to focus on Reserve conversion in the North Pilbara with up to five drill rigs in the field and a particular emphasis on upgrading inferred resources at McPhee Creek. Further infill drilling designed to extend and upgrade resources is underway or proposed at Wodgina, Abydos and Mt Webber.
Atlas is currently mining and exporting at an annualised rate of 6Mtpa from its 100%-owned Pardoo and Wodgina Iron Ore Projects, located 75 and 100 kilometres by road respectively from Port Hedland, in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.
Moreover, Atlas is progressing development at its Mt Dove, Abydos and Mt Webber DSO Projects. When combined with additional export tonnages from its existing Pardoo and Wodgina DSO mines, Atlas is targeting DSO exports at an annualised rate of 12Mtpa by 2012.