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  • Challenger Exploration (CEL) begins a scoping study for its Hualilan gold project in San Juan, Argentina
  • The managers of the study, Mining Plus, will assess the option of a staged start-up focussing on the existing core of 1.1 million ounces at 5.6 grams per tonne gold equivalent
  • Additionally, the study will evaluate the use of renewable power options in addition to local grid power
  • CEL says it will include deriving costs calculated from first principles based on material take offs, preliminary budgets and factorised costs to enable a transition into a pre-feasibility study
  • Shares in CEL were down 2.78 per cent trading at 17.5 cents at 12:50pm AEDT

Challenger Exploration (CEL) has begun a scoping study for its Hualilan gold project in San Juan, Argentina.

International mining consultancy group Mining Plus has been appointed by CEL as the managers of the scoping study.

Mining Plus will assess the option of a staged start-up focussing on the existing core of 1.1 million ounces at 5.6 grams per tonne (g/t) gold equivalent.

Additionally, the study will evaluate the use of renewable power options in addition to local grid power.

Challenger said the final scoping study would be based on an update to the current mineral resource estimate of 2.1 million ounces gold equivalent planned for the first quarter of the new year.

The company anticipates the scoping study will be completed thereafter, in the second quarter of 2023.

An archaeological study has also been completed with environmental baseline monitoring underway.

At the same time, social and community streams are ongoing as part of the company’s day-to-day operations.

A geotechnical evaluation of the open pit at Hualilan is scheduled to begin shortly. Initial hydrology is underway, with the drilling of the first water well complete, pump out testing is expected to start in January.

Challenger said benchmarking from comparable mining operations in South America and Argentina is also largely completed.

The study will include deriving costs calculated from first principles based on material
take offs, preliminary budgets and factorised costs, to enable a transition into a pre-feasibility study.

Shares in CEL were down 2.78 per cent trading at 17.5 cents at 12:50pm AEDT.

CEL by the numbers
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