Braveheart has asked the British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority (BCH) to complete a facilities study (FS) by late January for the brownfield copper, gold and silver site near Cranbrook that would define connection requirements and establish a project timetable.
An earlier study by the authority concluded that it is feasible to connect the mine's load of 7.5 MVA to the BCH transmission system.
BCH has now scheduled a connection date of June 2021 for the Cranbrook mine, and has estimated the costs of system reinforcements and revenue metering at C$300,000 (US$230,000).
"The FS is the final technical study that needs to be completed by BCH", said Ian Berzins, President and chief executive commented. "Upon completion of the FS, the Company will have invested $360,000 in the hydroelectric reconnection project in terms of the transformer procurement cost and technical studies, representing approximately 50% of the total cost of the project. Once reconnected to the 66 kV power line, the BRM [Bull River mine] will be de-risked from the perspective of power supply."
Braveheart noted that a connection to the 66 kV power line will enable it to operate the 700 tonnes per day crushing and milling circuit, and advance underground mining activities.
In August 2019, the company secured a 10 MVA replacement transformer for the surface substation. The company plans to move the transformer from Manitoba to the mine site in British Columbia in the second quarter of 2021.
In addition to commissioning of the new substation and reconnection to the 66 kV power line, the company needs to complete other surface upgrades that are required to make the mill facility operational.
These include the installation of a flotation circuit and a filtration circuit in the mill and civil works associated with the development of a dry stack tailings storage facility (TSF).
In July, Stantec Consulting was chosen by Braveheart Resources to design the TSF.
The company plans to advance the Bull River mine project in a phased approach wherein a surface stockpile of mineralized material will provide the initial feedstock to the upgraded mill facility.
The mine was last operated in 2009 and had about 21,000m of underground development on seven levels and facilities including a 750t/d mill, Braveheart said.
It has a 2018 indicated resource of 72.9 million pounds of copper, 25,000 ounces of gold and 857,000oz of silver, plus an inferred 14.5Mlb of copper, 5,000oz of gold and 144,000oz of silver.