Feldspar Project

UMIC holds an exploration license that covers wide area. Over a period of about 2 years, UMIC undertook an extensive program of technical studies in the licence area. The first phase of the technical program involved geological fieldwork, in order to prepare geological maps of the licence area. Based on this work, a smaller part of the licence was selected for more intensive and detailed technical evaluation.

Further geological fieldwork in the selected area led to the preparation of detailed geological maps of the individual ore deposits. Guided by this mapping, grid-controlled systematic surface sampling and diamond core drilling was undertaken on the deposits. The samples collected were subjected to mineralogical analysis and chemical assaying. A suite of physical tests was also undertaken, including button firing, bench-scale crushing, milling and other processing methods. These studies concluded that the licence contains a numbers of ore bodies with good potential for commercial exploitation.

The feldspar ore is in the form of pegmatite veins, which were formed from a residual solution of granitic magma that contained large, euhedral feldspar crystals.

The pegmatite will be mined by the conventional open-pit method: removal of the talus deposit and clearing the surface followed by drilling and blasting to break up the rock and make it accessible to diggers and loaders. The ore is then removed and transported to feed stocks for the on-site processing plant. The feed stocks will be sampled and tested to ensure that the process plant is supplied with a constant, homogeneous, supply of ore that is appropriate for the output product being produced.

The mine site facility is able to produce basic crushed feldspar of varying mineralogical characteristics and particle sizes.

The processing plant has been carefully designed with the intention of supplying quality products to the market:

  • Great care has been taken to ensure that the all the machines in the processing plant meet or exceed international standards,
  • The processing plant includes the separate collection of agglomerates, to minimize the free silica and iron in the material that is processed to produce the output products,
  • Magnetic pulleys are incorporated in the design, to eradicate metallic iron,
  • Additional magnetic separation will be used in all the product streams, to further beneficiate the product,
  • The processing plant crushing units are titanium carbide lined, to have minimized iron contamination,
  • A comprehensive dust collection system will protect the local and working environments and also ensure mica and fines free products.

UMIC will adhere to strict selective mining methods, to cater to the specific needs of the glass, ceramic and porcelain industries.

There is currently a well-established customer base in Saudi Arabia and the other member countries of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC). Given that many of these customers currently import their feldspar requirements from outside the GCC, UMIC's production provides a source for their requirements local to the GCC.