130 year
Mining Legacy

The operations that make up the Group’s Barberton Mines complex have been operating for over 100 years and include the Fairview, Consort and Sheba Mines. These flagship mines are long-life, high-grade operations that produce some 80,000oz of gold per year with an excellent safety record. Barberton Mines has a life of mine estimated at 20 years within the currently identified Mineral Resources. The team at Barberton Gold Mines achieved the milestone of 3 million fatality free shifts in June 2020.


Fairview Mine
is the birthplace of BIOX® (Biological Oxidation), an environmentally friendly process of releasing the gold from the sulphide that surrounds the gold, using organisms that perform this process naturally and is still used as the training facility for all BIOX® plants globally. Sheba Mine is one of the oldest and richest working gold mines in the world.

Operational and Performance Review 2022

Performance FY22

Operational & Performance review 2022
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Performance By Operation

Consort Mine

Decreased production of 10,202oz (FY21; 17,226oz) as a result of geotechnical constraints

  • Impeded timeous development towards the strike and up-dip continuation of the PC Shaft orebody
  • Constraints have subsequently been addressed and development resumed

Development has progressed towards the MMR and Consort Bar orebodies on 15 and 28 Level respectively

  • Reserve delineation underground drilling programmes implemented to explore down-dip extensions of orebodies
  • Borehole successfully intersected high-grade gold carrying structures at the 44 Level, MMR and Consort Bar orebodies
  • Assay results yielded up to 72.8g/t over 0.86 metres at the 44 Level orebody
  • Specific focus and studies centred on equipping PC Shaft remnant blocks and extracting high-grade ore between 42 and 41 Levels

Exploration

  • Focused on MMR and PC Shaft orebody horizons
  • High-resolution reserve definition drilling focused on 15 Level MMR and deeper Consort Bar orebodies around 43 Level to 45 Level

Fairview Mine

Increased mineral reserve delineation drilling has:

  • Improved geological models and predictability
  • Enabled development towards down-dip extensions of the orebodies
  • Improved confidence in the grade control models that can be updated to inform mine design optimisation

MRC orebody – Five high-grade platforms (256, 258, 259, and 358) now established to improve mining flexibility

  • Six diamond boreholes were completed exploring the immediate down-dip extent from the 258 to 259 platforms
    • Measured Resource of 24.5kt at an average of 42.6g/t delineated
  • Drilling in FY23 will target further down-dip extensions to the 260 platform
  • Down-dip extent is open at depth and informs the 20-year LOM of this orebody

Rossiter orebody – Three mining platforms now available, further improving flexibility

  • Drilling intersected significant free gold mineralization – grades ranging from 29g/t over 2.9m/t to 165g/t over 0.7m, in separate boreholes

Sub-vertical shaft design progressing – will increase production by up to 10k oz per year through increased hoisting capacity

  • Optimised infrastructure will further reduce costs

Design work in progress for the development and equipping of the 4 Decline from 42 to 64 Level- will decongest existing infrastructure and improve the production profile

Sheba Mine

Focus on the extraction of MRC and ZK orebodies

  • Development on the down-dip extension of ZK on 37 and 38 Levels towards Fairview
  • 10 diamond boreholes were drilled to upgrade Mineral Resources

Additional platforms developed at high-grade free-milling Thomas orebody

  • Mining method optimised from long-hole open stoping to up-dip mining – limits dilution

Prospective shallow Mineral Resources on the northern limb were explored

  • On 22 Level, 8 additional boreholes planned for FY23
  • On 23 Level, 11 diamond boreholes were drilled to explore the up-dip extent of the 260 Cross Fracture

Project Dibanisa

Development to connect the underground infrastructure of Fairview and Sheba Mines will:

  • Optimise costs and efficiencies, increase production
  • Allow Sheba’s MRC Shaft ore to be processed at Fairview’s metallurgical and BIOX plants
  • Moving ore through Fairview will create capacity at Sheba’s ZK Shaft and metallurgical plant

Work in progress includes:

  • Rehabilitation of required rails and haulages at Fairview and Sheba
  • Establishment of a series of 3 ore-passes between Sheba 23 Level and Fairview 38 Level haulages
    • Project construction to be completed by December 2022 – with the first Sheba ore expected to be hoisted at Fairview during Q3 of FY23

Related Questions

How many mines are there in Barberton?

There are four mines in Barberton, including Fairview Mine, Sheba Mine, New Consort Mine and Agnes Mine. Gold mining is the main operation at all four mines. The Barberton area is abundant with gold-bearing reefs.

How many mines are there in Mpumalanga?

There are more than 200 mines in Mpumalanga as listed on the official Department of Mineral Resources website. This includes 13 gold mining operations.