Silvercrest Metals Inc. [SIL-TSX; SILV-NYSE American] has completed the first pour of silver and gold at the 100%-owned Las Chispas mine in Sonora, Mexico. The first precious metal pour was completed on June 30, 2022, and consisted of 312 kilograms of dorÃ© with approximately 9,200 ounces of silver and 100 ounces of gold.
Eric Fier, CEO, commented: â€œThis marks another significant milestone in progressing towards commercial production in Q4 2022. It is with great pride that I acknowledge the hard work of our team and thank everyone who has contributed to the completion of construction of Las Chispas, ahead of schedule and under budget, and all of those dedicated to commissioning the mine.â€
Pierre Beaudoin, COO, said: â€œWe are pleased with the initial trajectory of the plant commissioning. While it is still early days in the plant ramp-up, we are encouraged by some of the operating indicators. Underground mining rates and our knowledge of the deposit continue to increase, which will be key data, along with plant performance, to incorporate in our updated technical report (including resources, reserves, mine plan, revised costs and economics), expected to be released in H1 2023.â€
Underground mining rates have increased during the quarter with production from stoping and in-vein development in a number of veins. Mining is active using two mining methods. As outlined in the company’s feasibility study of January 2021, the processing plant is expected to utilize low-grade historic stockpiles through the ramp-up, reducing the reliance on underground mine production at the start of the operation.
Over all, the plant commissioning is tracking in line with the company’s objective to reach nameplate capacity of 1,250 tonnes per day. The plant started in late May, 2022, and milled an estimated 12,700 tonnes of low-grade ore during June, 2022. Metallurgical recoveries are expected to reach feasibility study parameters in 2023 and results observed to date are tracking toward these objectives.
The company expects to provide further updates on the commissioning and ramp-up of operations later in Q3 2022.
Silvercrest is a Canadian precious metals exploration and development company headquartered in Vancouver, B.C. that is focused on new discoveries, value-added acquisitions and near-term production in Mexicoâ€™s historic precious metal districts. The company’s top priority is the high-grade, historic Las Chispas mining district in Sonora, Mexico, where it has completed construction of its Las Chispas project and is proceeding with commissioning.