The Jaguar Operation is an operating underground zinc and copper mine located within the Eastern Goldfields of Western Australia, 60km north of Leonora and 250 km north of Kalgoorlie.
Round Oak acquired Jaguar from Independence Group in May 2018. The operation consists of an owner-operated underground mine with centralised processing facilities producing copper and zinc concentrates via conventional flotation. The concentrates are trucked 720km to the Port of Geraldton and then shipped to metal smelters.
The processing facility was constructed in 2006 and has a capacity of 600ktpa.
Jaguar has a current mine life of four years, with significant potential for the operational life to be extended through exploration campaigns.
The operation spans a 410.6 square kilometre tenement package and hosts multiple favourable stratigraphic horizons along a 50km corridor. The tenements are actively being explored for new base metals deposits as well as extensions to the known deposits.
Multiple deposits have been mined at Jaguar within the volcanogenic massive sulphide system, including:
The Bentley mine is the current focus of operations. Within the Bentley mine, the massive sulphide mineralisation identified to date occurs as eight main lenses: Arnage, Bentayga, Brooklands, Mulsanne, Comet, Flying Spur, Pegasus and Zagato.
Ore is currently being sourced from the Bentayga, Arnage and Zagato lenses. Underground mining at Bentley predominately uses open stoping methods, with ore hauled to the surface using dump trucks and then transported to the process plant.
The Pegasus lens was discovered in 2018 and is now being brought into production to increase production from 360ktpa to 500ktpa. Ore drive development at Pegasus commenced in January 2021, with stoping beginning in May 2021. Pegasus will be mined in parallel with Bentayga to optimise production from Bentley.
The remnant Jaguar and Teutonic Bore deposits, and the unmined Triumph deposit all have potential to add underground ore sources to Bentley and are at varying stages of study/development.
Teutonic Bore, discovered in 1974 by Carpentaria Exploration, was the first deposit mined at what is now known as the Jaguar operation. A total of 1.6 Mt of ore grading 3.5% Cu, 11.2% Zn and 146 g/t Ag was mined at Teutonic Bore between 1980 and 1985. The Jaguar deposit was discovered in 2002 and is located approximately 4km south of Teutonic Bore.
The Jaguar leases were acquired by Jabiru Metals (Jabiru) in 2004 and commenced production from the Jaguar underground mine in 2007.
The Bentley deposit was discovered during 2008 and was brought into production in 2011, replacing the Jaguar mine as the main ore source. Mining of the Jaguar deposit ceased in 2012 and the mine was placed on care and maintenance. Independence Group acquired the Jaguar Operation from Jabiru in 2011, at which time it was comprised of the Jaguar and Bentley mines.
The Triumph deposit, located 2km north of Teutonic Bore, was discovered in 2014 and represents a stand-alone underground mine yet to be developed. The Bentayga Lens within the Bentley deposit was discovered in mid-2017, approximately 250m south of the Bentley decline. The Pegasus lens was discovered at Bentley in 2018. Further lenses (Spectre and Turbo) were discovered at depth at Bentley in late 2020 and will be subject of underground drilling campaigns in 2021.
The Jaguar project consists of a cluster of Volcanogenic Massive Sulphide (VMS) deposits. It covers 50km of strike of stratigraphy prospective for further VMS mineralisation and encompasses three high grade copper-zinc-silver-gold deposits within the mine corridor (from north to south): the historic Teutonic Bore deposit, Jaguar, and Bentley; as well as the lower grade Triumph deposit located to the north of Teutonic Bore.
The economic mineralisation consists of massive zoned sulphide lenses that formed in the volcaniclastics and sediments beneath the sea floor with associated footwall feeder structures. A well establish stratigraphic sequence has been identified:
The known economic deposits lie adjacent to or above the footwall rhyolite. Further rhyolite units exist outside of the mine corridor and recent structural studies suggest they are likely to be the same rhyolite that controls the VMS deposits discovered to date.
The deposits generally dip steeply to the west with strike and dip extents of about 400m. The deposits are located 250 to 300m below surface and display strong plunge trends along which there is potential for additional deposits. The various lenses are interpreted to be part of a stacked lens system which demonstrates additional potential for discovery at various levels within the host stratigraphy. Large scale structural repetition of the host stratigraphy suggests the true prospective strike may be well in excess of 50km.
Emerging camp-scale gold opportunities also have been identified, with recent drilling yielding high grade intercepts which support regional exploration upside.
The Jaguar Operation has a total landholding tenure of 410.6 square kilometres made up of: