Pilbara Minerals releases pre-feasibility study for P2000 expansion at Pilgangoora

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Pilbara Minerals releases pre-feasibility study for P2000 expansion at Pilgangoora

Pilbara Minerals released a pre-feasibility study to expand production at Pilgangoora to 2.0Mtpy spodumene concentrates.

Pilbara Minerals announced the results of a pre-feasibility study into the P2000 expansion plan, increasing capacity at the Pilgangoora lithium mine to 2.0Mtpy spodumene concentrates. The spodumene concentrate produced in the expanded capacity operation is set to grade 5.2% Li2O, meaning the P2000 program would be extracting and producing roughly 257ktpy LCE contained in mineral concentrates. Pilbara has estimated the required capital expenditure to construct necessary infrastructure for the P2000 expansion would be A$1.2Bn (US$797M) including contingency   

The P2000 plans are a significant uplift to the current capacity of roughly 680ktpy spodumene concentrates in Q1 2024. Pilbara Minerals is in the process of implementing the P1000 plans at Pilgangoora, which are scheduled to increase production capacity at the Pilgangoora mine to 1.0Mpty spodumene concentrate (roughly containing 136ktpy LCE) in mid-2025. Pilbara is expected to release a final investment decision for the P2000 expansion in mid-late 2026, based on a feasibility study scheduled for end-2025 and prevalent market conditions to determine any financing commitments and timing of any expansion.

The P2000 expansion to Pilgangoora would see Pilbara Minerals cement its position as the second-largest spodumene producer globally, behind Talison Lithium at the Greenbushes mine. With Pilbara being a non-downstream integrated processor of lithium mineral concentrates, the increase in capacity to >250ktpy LCE in concentrates at Pilgangoora would significantly improve the market availability for third-party processors of lithium mineral concentrates. This will be important for regions such as Europe which are looking to improve regional refined lithium production, though have limited lithium mineral resources to match downstream processing production targets.