Marais, FJ, Snyman, BJ, Lötter, PF, Newman, PD & Wates, JA 2005, 'Overview of the Methodology Employed During the Feasibility and Trade-Off Studies and Optimum Disposal Strategy', in R Jewell & S Barrera (eds), Proceedings of the International Seminar on Paste and Thickened Tailings
, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 231-250.
Finsch Diamond Mine, owned by the De Beers Group is situated approxi-
mately 200 km North West of Kimberley, Northern Cape Province, South Africa.
Improved market conditions motivated Finsch Mine to consider increasing their
production by 40%. The need to increase production, together with the fact that
the existing fine residue deposit facilities, known in the South African diamond
industry as Slimes Dams, are nearing the end of their useful lives, initiated a number
of feasibility and trade-off studies to develop a new fines disposal strategy.
The scope of the feasibility studies comprised site selection, evaluation of dif-
ferent disposal strategies, optimisation of the slurry transportation system and
modifications to the existing process plant. Throughout these studies, social and
environmental considerations formed part of the evaluation process. The results
of these studies have shown that slimes disposal, as thickened tailings / paste will
be optimal in terms of cost, risk and environmental impact.
This paper presents an overview of the methodology employed during the
feasibility and trade-off studies to analyse different options relating to paste pro-
duction, incorporating existing plant and new technology.
232 Paste 2005, Santiago, Chile
Overview of the Methodology... Marais, F.J. et al.
Golder Associates Africa (Pty) Ltd (2003) Report on Finsch Trade-off Study for a
New Fine Residue Disposal Facility Report No: 5751/5865/1/G, August 2003.
Golder Associates Africa (Pty) Ltd (2004) Report on Finsch Fine Residue Dis-
posal Design – Report in Support of the Class II Estimate Report No: 5752/
6179/8/S, January 2004.
De Beers, Finsch Diamond Mine (2004) Required Operational Capacity State-
ment for the Finsch Paste Trade-off Study, Document No FMTPU-ROC-FRD-
De Beers, Finsch Diamond Mine (2002) Main Treatment Plant Fines Disposal
Capacity, Document No NFR-TF-J07, 2002, (Compiled by J.J. Rajan).
Golder Associates Africa (Pty) Ltd (2004) Report on Finsch Mine Residue Dis-
posal Paste Option Trade-off study Report No: 6439/6480/6/S, August 2004.
This report includes references to all previous work done by others i.e. pilot paste