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Ero Copper’s Brazil project on track for first copper production in 2H24

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Global Mining Review,

Ero Copper Corp. has provided a construction update for the Tucumã Project, highlighting significant progress since October 2023.

Ero Copper’s Brazil project on track for first copper production in 2H24

With physical completion now at over 85% and production of copper concentrate scheduled to commence in 2H24, the Company has initiated the transition from construction to commissioning, as outlined below in the 2024 Commissioning Plan.


Construction: Physical construction of the Project is now over 85% complete.

  • Main substation and e-houses installed and commissioned with 16-km power line tie-in to the national grid completed ahead of schedule; line expected to be fully energised by the 20 January 2024.
  • Pre-stripping activities are tracking approximately 10% ahead of schedule with completion now expected at the end of 1Q24. To date, approximately 3200 t of sulphide ore have been placed on the run-of-mine stockpile for process plant commissioning.
  • Mechanical completion testing and sub-component commissioning have commenced for key pieces of processing equipment including the primary crusher, ball mill, secondary and tertiary crushers, vibrating screen decks, and flotation cells.
  • Remaining steel structures, plate work, and mechanical equipment installations are tracking on or ahead of schedule. Construction activities through the remainder of 1Q24 will focus on completing piping, electric cabling, automation, and instrumentation system installations.

2024 Commissioning Plan: Expected commissioning milestones in advance of first concentrate production in 2H24, include:

  • End of 1Q24: mechanical completion and sub-component commissioning (lubrication, hydraulic, electrical, instrumentation, and automation systems).
  • March 2024: First ore through the crushing circuit comprised of primary and secondary crushers, as well as screening and conveyance systems.
  • April 2024: First ore through the milling circuit.
  • May 2024: First ore through regrind mill circuit, concentrate and tailings filtering systems.
  • June 2024: Integrated commissioning with flotation circuit and Project ramp-up.

People and safety: Opportunistic increase in construction workforce mobilisation.

  • Recent demobilisation of a Brazilian mining project has allowed the Company to add approximately 500 trained contractors on site, increasing the total workforce of employees and contractors to approximately 2220 people.
  • To date, there have been no lost-time injuries on the Project, with over three million hours of work completed since 2022.

“As we transition from construction to commissioning, the paramount achievement at Tucumã is the outstanding safety performance of our construction team. Marking a significant milestone, we have surpassed three million hours of work without a lost time incident. I extend my heartfelt congratulations to our Project leadership team, as well as the 2200 employees and contractors on site, for their continued diligence and thoughtful execution in advancing Tucumã towards production,” said David Strang, Chief Executive Officer.

“This is an exciting phase for Ero Copper as we prepare to bring Tucumã into operation later this year and anticipate consolidated copper production reaching over 100 000 t in 2025. With the recent shift in copper supply-demand fundamentals signalling supply deficits in 2024 and 2025, the timing of our growth trajectory couldn't be better.”

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Copper mining news Brazilian mining news