The Lanfranchi operations and associated Tramways tenements (that comprise the Lanfranchi project) are about 42 kilometres south of Kambalda in WA. Panoramic Resources acquired a 75 per cent interest in the Lanfranchi Project from BHP Billiton Nickel West (formerly WMC Resources) in June 2004, and in 2009 purchased the remaining 25 per cent from its joint venture partner in the project, Brilliant Mining Corporation.
Production to September 30, 2010, totalled 314,000 tonnes grading 0.1967 per cent for 639t of copper, and grading 2.4243 per cent for 7622t of nickel.
Earlier production at the Lanfranchi operations totalled 398,920t of ore for 10,122t of contained nickel at June 2010. At that time, the Lanfranchi Project had a proven and probable ore reserve of 2.25 million tonnes at 2.45 per cent nickel for 55,000t of contained nickel. Based on the current mine production schedule, the Lanfranchi project was expected to have a mine life of at least seven years. However, based on the significant resource base, exploration success, the prospectivity of the tenements and subject to favourable economics, Panoramic Resources expected this to extend to ten years.
WMC Resources discovered nickel at the Tramways tenements in the early 1970s, and by systematic exploration over the ensuing years, identified 10 nickel sulphide deposits. Since the commencement of mining at the Edwin shoot in 1976 about 100,000t of nickel metal has been produced from the Tramways deposits.
Operating. During the September quarter 2011 nickel metal in ore from Lanfranchi was 14 per cent below the previous quarter primarily due to disruptions to stoping activities caused by the suspension of paste filling underground while major capital works were completed on the paste plant.
In October 2011 Panoramic announced that its customer BHP Nickel West would accept an increase from 350,000 tonnes per annum to 470,000tpa from Lanfranchi for the 2012 financial year.