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Sierra Metals Peru

Yauricocha Mine

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Summary

Location: Yauyos Province, Peru   Stage: Production 
Size: 18,778 ha   Mill: Chumpe Mil (On-site)
Ownership: 81.80%   Capacity (tpm): 75,000 
Metals: Silver-Copper-Lead-Zinc-Gold     Deposit Type: High Temp Carbonate Replacement
By-product cash cost1: USD$(24.26)/oz silver
 
 
 

Overview

The Yauricocha mine, is an underground mine located in western central Peru approximately 12 km west of the Continental Divide. The Yauricocha property covers 18,778 hectares that straddle a 20 km strike length of the prolific Yauricocha fault, a major ore controlling structure in this part of western central Peru. The mine is at an average altitude of 4,600 metres and has been a producing asset for more than 60 years. Ore is processed at the on-site Chumpe plant using a combination of crushing, grinding and flotation and has a capacity of 2,500 tpd. The ore is treated in two separate circuits and is extracted from three different types of deposits which include the following:

  1. A polymetallic deposit, containing silver, lead, copper and zinc;
  2. A copper deposit, containing copper and silver; and
  3. A lead oxide deposit, containing silver, gold and lead.

Production Summary

Yauricocha Production 3 Months Ended
  Sep 30, 2013 Sep 30, 2014 % Var.
Tonnes processed 201,769 224,970 11%
Daily Throughput 2,305 2,571 12%
Silver (oz) 447,145 552,677 24%
Copper (000 lb) 1,458 1,899 30%
Lead (000 lb) 8,338 12,194 46%
Zinc (000 lb) 12,268 14,668 20%
Gold (oz) 1,673 1,369 -18%

(For a detailed summary of production please click here)

NI 43-101 Reserves and Resources

On November 19, 2013 an updated NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate was released on the Yauricocha Property. The current reserves and resources at the Yauricocha mine are as follows:

  Mt Ag (g/t) Cu (%) Pb (%) Zn (%) Au (g/t)
Proven and Probable Reserves  6,394,000 94.72 0.69 2.09 2.53 0.80
Measured and Indicated
Resources
1
6,139,000 111.60 1.02 2.36 3.31 0.94
Inferred Resources 371,000 239.92 0.42 5.16 2.43 1.45

1 Measured and Indicated Resources include Proven and Probable Reserves.

(To see the full NI 43-101 resource tables please click here)

Geology

Yauricocha is a carbonate-replacement ore deposit. This type of deposit is found on continental margins of orogenic belts and on the inner side of principal arcs where carbonate rocks representing miogeoclinal or stable platform depositional environments are widespread. The deposits are associated with magmatic intrusions that are believed to be a result of subduction. 

The carbonate-replacement ore deposits of the Yauricocha district are spatially and genetically related to the Yauricocha stock, a composite intrusive body of granodioritic to quartz monzonitic composition that has been radiometrically dated at about 7.5 million years old.  The stock intrudes tightly folded limestone and lutite beds of the Late Cretaceous Jumasha and Celendín Formations, and the overlying Casapalca Formation.

Mineralization of the Yauricocha deposit is formed principally of pyrite, quartz, enargite, chalcopyrite, bornite and covellite in the core and central parts of the bodies.  Loose masses of friable pyrite, galena, sphalerite and minor amounts of chalcopyrite in a gangue of limestone, clay and quartz occur in the periphery of the bodies.  Also, native gold is associated with the sulfide minerals.

Mineralogical zoning of the district is marked, with the core of the central part consisting of enargite located within the Jumasha limestone near the contact with the France Chert.  Next to the west are rich bodies of bornite and chalcopyrite with predominance of enargite.  Further to the west occur rich bodies of lead, zinc, silver and gold.  The same zoning is observed at a smaller scale inside the ore body. 

Going Forward

Currently, an exploration drilling programme is underway at the Yauricocha property to expand known mineralization at depth in the Central Mine area and explore other high potential regional targets. The Company is building new mining infrastructure at depth to increase the production capacity of the mine facility and improve operating efficiencies. 

Footnotes

1 For the three months ended Sept 30, 2014