Evaluating Multi Zone Ore Bodies of the Raglan Nickel Deposit using Current Planning Techniques Complemented by Real Option Pricing


Bruno Lemelin

Falconbridge Ltd Raglan Mine has been in production since 1998 and has produced annually some 900 000T of ore grading 3.1% nickel, 0.9% copper and 0.06% cobalt. The mine is located in Nunavik, Northern Quebec. The current mine life is estimated at approximately 20 years. Reserves are composed of numerous small ore bodies situated across a 65 km strike length. Planning the extraction of the ten small mineralized zones represents a great challenge to optimize. The overall objective is to maximize the company's return on net assets. Actual planning uses computerized technology tools like Automod and Mine2-4D, and a conventional discounted cash flow method (DCF) of calculating net present value (NPV). The complex setting of Raglan could benefit from advance valuation techniques such as the real options method (RO). This paper will present the characteristics if the mines that make it a good candidate to use RO to gain further insight.
Keywords: Raglan Mine, copper, cobalt, real options method, RO