Minera Monte Sophie (MMS) is a Chilean company, part of New World Mining Inc. (Canada) that shall exploit its Pedernales Magnetite Mine to produce up to 5 million ton of 60% Fe (DSO) iron ore per year, starting with a smaller initial operational development to prove efficient mining and crushing, logistics and quality of the ore resource.
The mining property is 400 hectares and lies 5 km to the north-east of the north-eastern tip of the Pedernales Salt Lake (Salar de Pedernales), some 300 km to the northeast of the city of Copiapó, and at 3,700 meters above sea level. MMS has done extensive field work in the area of interest, with over 70,000 meters of geophysics, an exploratory diamond drill hole and over 2,000 meters reverse air drilling campaign, plus different lab analysis that have confirmed the rich magnetic content of the resource lying very close to the surface (low strip ratios). The mine is located 100 km from the railway (the Railway Co. has confirmed space and the available capacity to load our production), that ends in a port that also is willing to serve MMS’ ships.
The geophysics was concentrated in a relatively small part of the mine, where the strongest magnetic anomaly was confirmed. A basic exploratory diamond drill hole confirmed underground mineralization. A systematic Reverse Air drilling campaign showed a superficial ore body of +25 million ton of +60% Fe mineral resource (in 5 hectares), plus a further deeper disseminated resource not yet drilled (as the RA drilling equipment could not go deeper, alas, as many holes ended up in metal). Most of the property is still to be drilled further from the 5 hectares studied and below the (-) 200 meters we covered with the RA drilling campaign and into the (‐) 700 meters depth data obtained by the geophysics. The geophysics anomaly measured down to (‐) 700 meters, and showed a 228 million ton mineralized zone below the superficial ore mentioned above, estimating a possible total resource of 100 million ton of + 60% Fe in this area. The start-up of the mine is planned for the end of 2012 (early 2013), after the Environmental Permits are obtained in Q2/Q3 of 2,012 at a rate of ~80,000 tons of 60% DSO per month (1,000,000 ton/year), with Revenues of US$ 100 million from ore sales and Margins of US$60 million to start the operations. The full scale production is expected to be achieved by late 2014/early 2015 in order to produce a 5 million ton of iron ore volume, with Revenues of US$ 510 million and Operational Margins of US$ 365 million per year.