skip to content
Open main menu

Kalgoorlie Nickel Project ARL 100%

KNP Awarded Major Project Status by Australian Federal Government

  • Globally significant nickel and cobalt Mineral Resource at the Kalgoorlie Nickel Project (KNP) with Mineral Resource 5.9Mt contained nickel and 384kt contained cobalt, 3.39kt scandium, from just Goongarrie deposits and pipeline of other Critical Minerals
  • KNP offers stable, secure and ethical supply of highest quality battery-grade nickel and cobalt to feed the Electric Vehicle and Static Storage Battery revolution for decades to come
  • Sustainable and ethical supply of nickel and Critical Minerals for a low carbon future
  • The Kalgoorlie Nickel Project has been awarded Major Project Status by the Australian Federal Government, recognising the national and strategic significance of the KNP to the Australian economy and the Eastern Goldfields of Western Australia.

KNP – Highlights

Premier location for mining and production

  • WA is the premier global destination for sustainable and ethical development of minerals operations
  • Well established health, safety and environmental policies in a well credentialled geopolitical jurisdiction
  • Over 125 years of continuous mining with strong stakeholder support and access to skilled professionals in an infrastructure-rich region
  • Semi-arid Greater Western Woodlands environment, and historic mining jurisdiction conducive to best practice safe tailings management and rehabilitation

World class resource, 100% Ardea owned

  • 830Mt at 0.71% nickel and 0.046% cobalt for 5.9Mt contained nickel, 384kt contained cobalt plus scandium and other Critical Minerals (see full Mineral Resource)
    • Includes: Goongarrie Hub High grade component:
      • 78Mt at 1.0% nickel and 0.069% cobalt for 784kt contained nickel, 54kt contained cobalt
  • The KNP database contains 19,308 drill holes with 454,730 samples and 512,167 sample assays with QAQC
  • Detailed geological logging has resulted in a robust and repeatable model
  • All KNP Goongarrie Hub resources are on Granted Mining Leases with Native Title agreement in place
  • Ardea has full custody of all aspects of the KNP development
  • 100% off-take still available linked to project development funding

Desirable flowsheet with proven technology

  • Premium goethite ore (excellent comminution, less abrasive, low consumable consumption, lower maintenance)
  • Mixed Hydroxide Precipitate (MHP) or a refined Precursor Cathode Active Material (PCAM) product to meet Strategic Partner requirements
  • Ardea have the resource and material type to allow for expansion of Atmospheric Leach (AL) circuit which will result in increased nickel-cobalt production and increased power generation which will drive the carbon emissions down
  • Ni:Co:Mn ratio well suited to NCM811 battery technology
  • Additional Critical Mineral by-products (current bench-scale metallurgy)
  • Sustainable and ethical supply of nickel and Critical Minerals for a low carbon future

KNP Definitive Feasibility Study advancing

  • Awarded Major Project Status by Australian Federal Government. Streamlining access to support, approvals, and funding options
  • KNP is ranked #1 in the WA Geological Survey Nickel Resource table (>100kt Ni) published Feb 2022
  • Metallurgical test work in progress with initial results of material types showing very encouraging separation of mineralised clay from magnesite neutraliser by simple screening. Whilst study is still ongoing, there may be an opportunity to expand AL circuit with minimal cost with positve ESG outcomes
  • DFS work streams underway to deliver a world leading nickel-cobalt-scandium producer
  • Timing of finalising the Strategic Partner selection is linked to the completion of the DFS, so that the Strategic Partner has the opportunity to have direct input into the project scale and end product specification.

KNP - Optimum Resource Scale

  • The Kalgoorlie Nickel Project (KNP) scope has been expanded from Goongarrie alone to now include high grade goethite and mineralised neutraliser satellite pits at Highway and Siberia North (Goongarrie Hub)
  • Feasibility Study (FS) work streams accelerated for the DFS
  • The FS is evaluating the potential revenue contributions from mineralised neutraliser, scandium and other Critical Minerals, including Rare Earth Elements (REE) throughout the KNP
  • Direct infrastructure links from the KNP to Kwinana Battery Hub
  • Scale and dependability to track and trace a reliable and consistent source of nickel and cobalt without risk of geo-political, environmental / climate disruption or ESG uncertainty
  • Goongarrie nickel-cobalt-scandium resource update based on high grade mine strategy (>1% nickel)
  • Assumption is a world-leading Lithium Ion Battery (LIB) investor will require a minimum annual output of some 40,000tpa nickel metal in product
  • Goongarrie Hub dominantly premium goethite mineralogy with excellent mineralised zone continuity, low acid consumption and good plant rheology
  • Capability for >100 year potential supply of resource within KNP
  • KNP well suited for latest battery technology, NMC 811 LIB (8 parts Ni, 1 part Mn, 1 part Co)
  • Additionally ore has >0.3% Mn, no PFS input as yet on manganese (Mn) recovery levels
  • Significant alumina credit within Clay Upper Goethite, recent Ardea R&D indicates potential for High Purity Alumina (subject to bench-scale testing)
  • Potential for producing Precursor Ni-Co-Mn for specific LIB OEM. Goongarrie pilot plant work to date and planned, gives great confidence that the end product specifications will cater to our customer needs whether that be:
    • Mixed Hydroxide Product (MHP)
    • Precursor Cathode Active Material (PCAM)
    • Nickel Sulphate and Cobalt Sulphate (produced in Ardea 2018 piloting)
    • Mixed Sulphide Product (MSP) (produced in Ardea 2018 piloting)

KNP - Mineral Resources

On 16 June 2021, Ardea presented a mineral resource for the Highway deposit (part of the Goongarrie Hub), and an updated JORC 2012-compliant Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) completed for the Goongarrie Hub (previously termed Goongarrie Nickel Cobalt Project - GNCP), including a High Grade Resource - 78 million tonnes at 1.0% nickel Sustainable Long-life Battery Metal Resource Confirmed

JORC 2012-compliant Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) update for the Kalgoorlie Nickel Project (KNP)
Goongarrie and Highway deposits MRE based on 0.8% Ni cut-off grade Goongarrie and Highway deposits MRE based on 0.5% Ni cut-off grade KNP MRE based on 0.5% Ni cut-off grade
Measured Indicated & Inferred MRE
  • 78Mt at 1.0% Ni and 0.069% Co
  • Contained metal 784kt Ni and 54kt Co
  • 350Mt at 0.70% Ni and 0.044% Co
  • Contained metal 2.4Mt Ni and 154kt Co
  • 830Mt at 0.71% Ni and 0.046% Co
  • Contained metal 5.9Mt Ni and 384kt Co


  • Resources include 23Mt of saprock at 0.68% Ni, 0.023% Co with 33% carbonate mineral content (as magnesite and dolomite).
  • All tonnages and grades rounded to two digit precision.

For more detail and explanatory discussion, see ASX announcement dated 16 June 2021.

Feasibility Study

  • Gap Analysis Study (GAS) completed and DFS underway
  • Goongarrie Hub Hydrogeology Drilling completed – Rockwater & Harrington
  • Goongarrie Hub Metallurgical Drilling completed – contractor DDH1
  • Metallurgical Testwork Underway – ALS Laboratory Group
  • Financial modelling – Ockham Group UK
  • Stakeholder engagement accelerated, running parallel with DFS work

Process Metallurgy

  • Flow sheet uses all “off-the-shelf”, well understood & proven HPAL tech
  • No unproven, risky technologies
  • High ore grade + slurry density = Optimised Capex$ & Opex$ (best in Australia*)
  • Proven HPAL Ni & Co Extraction = Efficient, low energy intensity, proven “off-the-shelf”
  • Atmospheric Leach (AL) viable Ni extraction demonstrated in Vale Inco 2009 PFS
  • AL = Stability for acid plant (energy generation), maximises resource utilisation
  • Water Options =Using pit drainage + pending licensed borefield
  • MHP = Known technology & chosen feedstock for Lithium Ion Batteries
  • Potential for significant by-product credits from Sc, in addition to base case Ni-Co

A detailed update on Feasibilty work streams, including Bench-scale Metallurgy testwork, Metallurgical bulk samples archive, tailing disposal studies, infrastructure and logistic update and summary of environment and rehabilitation, is given in Ardea's Quarterly Report for March 2022.