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Australia’s Mining Sector Continues to Thrive



Established gold mines, combined with new mineral discoveries and technological advances, continue to underpin the country’s long streak of economic growth. At Total Plant Hire, we are focused on providing the Australian mining industry with the best plant equipment hire service available but we also keep a close eye on mining sector developments in this part of the world and are pleased to share the latest news with customers both old and new.

Two Historic Milestones

First up in today’s bulletin is the news that Western Australia’s Golden Mile recently achieved a historic milestone: the pouring of the 60 millionth ounce of gold from this part of the Goldfields-Esperance mining region. The current operator of the Golden Mile, KCGM, also reached a milestone of its own, having mined 20 million ounces of gold since 1989.

This particular mining area has been in continuous operation for over 124 years now, which makes it one of the oldest continually mined fields in the world. Founded in a time of economic depression, it has, along with other mining fields in WA and elsewhere in the country, continued to support the economy through good times and bad, and looks set to do so for many years to come.

The Golden Mile was previously home to in excess of 80 individual gold mines and today is under the joint ownership of Barrick Gold and Newmont Australia, while, as mentioned above, being operated by KCGM. It was KCGM’s general manager, Ian Butler, who represented the operator at the historic moment: “I am extremely proud to be associated with KCGM as we pour this historically significant ounce”, he said. He went on to talk about the past achievements in the Golden Mile, including the yield of 1,225,700 ounces of gold that was reached in 1903 and the more recent production figure of 764,000 ounces, achieved in 2016.

New Cobalt Zones Discovered at Mt Gilmore, NSW

On the other side of the country, Corazon Mining recently announced the discovery of several new cobalt zones in the combined cobalt, copper and gold field at Mt Gilmore. The initial drilling exploration at Cobalt Ridge was completed in late 2016, with results indicating the presence of one of the highest grade deposits of this mineral in Australia. Corazon Mining executives believe that the quality of cobalt that can be extracted from the field is high enough to make it suitable for use in the growing rechargeable battery sector, ensuring a plentiful demand for the foreseeable future.

The initial exploration phase also identified a number of new targets for future drilling, holding out the promise of even greater finds in the future. The fact that previous exploration was confined to a relatively small area means that there could be plenty more to come from Cobalt Ridge as exploration drilling operations are expanded.

Licencing of New Mineral Analysis and Logging Technology

The advanced analysis and logging technology developed by Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) is set to take the global mining world by storm after being licensed to Corescan, the Australian METS specialist. Known as Hylogger, the advanced drill material scanner provides companies conducting geological surveys with a hyper-spectral analysis of the composition of drill cores, in near real time. It is able to achieve this by analysing the light reflected from minerals contained in the cores, producing far more accurate and reliable data than existing visual techniques currently in use in the industry.


Corescan plans to integrate the new technology with the advanced hyper-spectral imaging equipment it has already developed, enabling it to offer its clients a wider and more effective range of drill core analysis solutions, tailored to meet the needs of various sectors within the mining and resources industries. Meanwhile, having passed the baton to Corescan as far as the continuing development of Hylogger is concerned, CSIRO can focus its efforts on applying and integrating hyper-spectral data with other data sets, enabling even faster analysis and resource characterisation of mineral deposits in the future. Given that in Australia alone, almost $600 million is spent on exploratory drilling every year, the global commercial possibilities for Hylogger could be quite substantial.

Whether you want to catch up on the latest mining industry news or you are looking for a reliable plant equipment hire service to support your own operations, don’t forget to bookmark our site and come back soon. For pricing and availability information concerning specific plant and machinery, please do not hesitate to call on 1300 11 HIRE (4473) or email whenever convenient.

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