Shares in Tsodilo Resources (CVE:TSD) advanced in Toronto as it updated on the BK16 kimberlite project in Botswana, saying the DMS (dense medium separation) plant was commissioned in January this year.
Treatment of the samples from the large diameter drilling (LDD) programme last year started on January 18 and so far, 724.7 tons have been processed, or 141 samples out of a total of 243 or 61% of the tonnage.
These 141 samples have generated 2,778.6 kg of concentrate translating to a yield of 0.38%, the firm noted.
Tsodilo expects that the treatment of the LDD samples through the plant will be completed in the first week of April this year, when the processing of the tailing material of BK16 will then resume.
Large diameter drilling..
The large diameter drilling (LDD) programme was carried out between July and October last year and a total of 3,150 meters was drilled.
Excluding cover sediments, 2,008.6 tonnes of kimberlite was extracted.
The kimberlite was sampled every 12 meters down each hole subdividing the 1,441.5 tonnes into 243 individual samples for treatment.
Meanwhile, a POLUS-M X-ray sorter has been set up to treat dry DMS concentrate in the size range of -8 +3 mm and -3 +1 mm, the firm said.
So far the sorter has treated 32 LDD samples and produced cumulatively 7 kg of concentrate in 1 to 3 mm size range and 0.6 kg of the 3 to 8 mm size material.
The X-ray sorted concentrates will be hand sorted in Maun at the firm's secure sorting facility by a third-party sorter starting on March 19.
Tsodilo said the recovered diamonds will be transported to Gaborone, Botswana for cleaning and valuation.
Mulling a larger machine..
The company is also mulling whether to obtain the use of a larger BV machine to treat the plus 8 mm fraction.
The BK16 kimberlite project lies within the Orapa kimberlite field (OKF) in Botswana. The diamond mines in Botswana have produced an average of 27mln carats annually in the last 10 years.
In 2017, the OKF area produced 11.07mln carats. Of the 83 known kimberlite bodies, 11 have been or are currently being mined.
These are AK01, AK02 and AK07 (Orapa, Debswana), AK06 (Karowe, Lucara Diamond Corporation), BK01, BK09, BK12 and BK15 (Damtshaa, Debswana), DK01 and DK02 (Letlhakane, Debswana) and BK11 (Firestone Diamonds).
The Karowe mine has produced such notable diamonds as the 1,109 carat 'Lesedi La Rona' and the 813 carat 'Constellation'.
Tsodilo shares gained 7.27% to C$0.59 each.