1949 – The incorporation of Consolidated Denison Mines, Limited, and Company history
Within 1936, the Denison Uranium Mine was widely being explored for copper-nickel occurrence by the Denison Copper Mines. Denison Copper Mines was first incorporated on November, 1936, before it became succeeded in 1946 by Denison Nickel Mines, Limited. Another company reorganization was made in 1949, when Denison Nickel Mines became North Denison Mines, Limited. Exploratory work was rather continued onward till 1954, when the company name was change to Consolidated Denison Mines, Limited. Company officials at this point had a capitalization of 6,000,000 shares at $1 par value, in which 4.450,000 shares were issued. The company’s officers, and directors became identified as S.B. Roman as President, A. W. Stollery as Vice President, J. C. Puhky as Secretary Treasurer, G. C Knowles, F. H. Jowsey, Senator T. H. Wood, J.S. Williams, L. R. Perini,, and Murray Axmith as Directors.
1954 - Consolidated Denison Mines, Ltd - Exploration work started
It was by the end of April, 1954, when Consolidated Denison Mines, Ltd., was able to purchase all of the presently held property of 83 claims which were adjoining to the south of Algom Uranium Mine's Quirke Lake Holdings. It was prior to this staking that Algom was then developing its now sizable ore-body which occurs in conglomerate beds dipping shallowly to the southwest, and striking to the southeast. These stakings were additionally considered of high priority potential as the management had considered this project quite encouraging. Most of this had been the result of finding new extensions on the Consolidated Denison Property that quite similar to the Algom ore-carrying structure. Before any development was started, it was advise by Ralph L. Benner, B Sc, P. Eng, who was the company's consulting geologist, that systematic gingering and geological mapping was to begun on the property in order to investigate the possibility of such extensions. Geological and exploratory work that was followed had shortly after encountered encouraging indications, and diamond drilling was begun on July, 1954.
It was after the first hole in the western sector of the property that it would additionally return two radioactive interceptions, which had moved operations to the eastern end of the property. This was followed by subsequent drilling that would only result in more highly satisfactory, confirming Mr. Benner's theory that the conglomerate seemed to follow a southeast-trending structure that was believed to be the path of an ancient shoreline or river bed.
As drilling had continued, it became apparent that an ore deposit of major proportions was developing. By the year end plans were greatly made towards stepping up the program so that the full extent of this deposit could be assessed as quickly as possible. Drilling was done by the means of bringing in a total of eight drills on the property to engage in both exploratory, and fill in drilling. It was also noted by the consulting geologist that all holes after No. 1 had intersected ore grades over excellent widths. The need of drilling on this property had rather became quite successful in terms of indicating the presence of a shallow dipping ore-bed averaging 12.1 feet in thickness with an average grade of 0.142% U3O8 by chemical analysis. This main bed had also been delineated over a strike length of approximately one and one half miles, and over a width, measured down the dip, of approximately 3,000 feet. These were also followed by significant results from Holes 10 and No. 6 that these were the last two holes completed in 1954. Hole No. 10 had cut 0.239% U3O8 over 22.5 feet, and Hole No. 6 had returned 0.13% U3O8 over 10 feet. These grade calculations were rather being conducted by radiometric assays. Both of these holes would also add substantially to the dimension of the indicated main ore-bed. Holes No. 7 and 9 could, of course, again increase these dimensions appreciably. Exploratory work had now gained the evidence of a major tonnage that was in sight for the planning of underground development, and production which had been started, and was now well advanced. By doing this type of work it was at this time when the company had contracted for the sinking of a five compartment shaft that was awarded to Patrick Harrison & Company Limited, who was once known as one of the prominent shaft sinking, and rock cutting contractors in Canada. Work which was started on the shaft had also been scheduled to commence immediately, which resulted in immediate target of the current operations that was to provide sufficient information as to grade and size of the ore-body for use in negotiating contracts for sale of the end product uranium concentrate. Previously this would also help in the guidance on the future milling complex that would be designed in order to meet these objectives.
Geological mapping that was under taken had indicated that the Quirke Lake Sector of the camp is characterized by gently dipping Huronian Sediments, consisting of Cobalt Series conglomerates, serpent quartzite, Espanola greywacke, impure limestones, Bruce Limestones, and conglomerates with Mississagi Quartzites. These series currently overlie the unconformity of the older granites, and Keewatin greenstones. Its also in the area where the present exploration work is being done that the younger sediments strike southeast and dip southwest. Some of the main radioactive minerals is Bannerite which occurs in the heavy sulphide matrix of quartz pebble conglomerate beds in the lower Mississagi quartzites. It also relevant that on the Algom Property, that had once adjoined to the north and west, that the ore-body has been drilled for a length of 7,000 feet and a width down dip of at least 1,300 feet, The ore-bearing strata rather dips and strikes towards the Consolidate Denison Property that was being worked on in 1954. This property is also underlain by a southeast-striking Huronian Sediments with a southwest dip to it. Its also along the west shoreline of Quirke Lake that the entire series ranging from the upper Mississagi to the Cobalt series are rather exposed. The flattening of the formations as seen on the west shore of Quirke Lake, and on the islands to the southeast, indicate the possibilities of an ancient shoreline on the basement rocks, as reflected in the much younger sediments above. Mapping which was commenced had additionally been aimed at geologically targeting various portions of the Consolidated Denison Property by using systematically giegered readings. It was also at this time that a survey was conducted under contract by an Ontario Land Surveyor and work had been aimed at bringing this property to patent.
It was also to date that a total of 21,500 feet of drilling had been done with eight holes completed and five now being drilled. One of the very first holes that was drilled had been aimed at picking up the down dip extension of the Algom Ore-body, which intersected two radioactive conglomerate beds which were below ore-grade. While this hole was being drilled, geological mapping was being conducted further to the east which indicated a flat lying bench striking southeast as interpreted from data obtained along the west shore of Quirke Lake and the islands to the southeast. This would only interpolate a bench, when it was projected northwest through the Algom Property, which coincided favorably with the company's results. On the theory that the ore structure was connected with the bech and that Algom's ore-body was striking southeast onto and across the Consolidated Denison Property, a drilling program wa laid out, which had been extremely successful in 1954. A total of seven wide spaced holes had also intersected radioactive conglomerates of ore grade over a strike length of one and one half miles and down dip to a distance of 3,000 feet. In every hole, a main bed rather occurred near the base of the Mississagi Series, with the average of which over seven holes is 0.142% U3O8 over 12.1 feet. In five of the holes a secondary bed which was approximately 100 feet above the main bed had average 0.06% U3O8 over 7.3 feet.
Hole No. 1 had intersect a width of 11.0 feet of 0.025% U3O8 per ton from 2,679 to 2,690 feet.
Hole No. 2 had intersect a width of 5.0 feet of 0.08% U3O8 per ton from 1,685 to 1,690 feet. This had also been followed by an intersection of 0.14% U3O8 per ton over a width of 11.3 feet and depths ranging from 1,685.7 to 1,810.0 feet.
Hole No. 3 would also intersect a width of 7.5 feet of 0.065% U3O8 per ton from 2,119.5 to 2,127.0 feet. This was also followed by an intersection of 0.103% U3O8 per ton over a width of 10.0 feet, and ranging from depths of 2,140.0 to 2,150.0 feet. Another intersection had included 0.065% U3O8 per ton over a width of 15.0 feet, and from 2,140.0 to 2,150.0 feet. The last intersection of had resulted in width of 10.0 feet of 0.10% U3O8 per ton that was made from 2,365.0 to 2,375.0 feet.
Hole No. 4 had also intersected a width of 5.0 feet of 0.10% U3O8 per ton from a depth of 1,373.5 to 1,378.5 feet. This was also followed by an intercept of 0.13% U3O8 per ton over 12.5 feet, and from depths of 1,502.5 to 1,515.0 feet.
Hole No. 5 would also intercept a width of 7.5 feet of 0.063% u3O8 per ton from depths of 1,862.5 to 1,870.0 feet. It would also include an intercept of 10.5 feet of 0.136% U3O8 per ton at a depth ranging from 2,024.5 to 2,035.0 feet. One last intercept had included 4.2 feet of 0.14% U3O8 per ton from a depths ranging at 2,042.5 to 2,046.7 feet.
Drill Hole No. 6 would also intercept 10.0 feet of 0.12% U3O8 per ton from depths of 2,204.6 to 2,214.6 feet.
Drill Hole No. 8 had intercepted 7.5 feet of 0.091% U3O8 per ton from a depth of 1,451.0 to 1,458.5 feet.
One last intercept had additionally included 22.5 feet of 0.21% U3O8 per ton from a depth of 1,077.5 to 1,100.0 feet.
Results of Series A bonds were directly issues to the Canadian Banks as collateral security for a loan of $15 million. Funds up to this amount are also to be used after proceeds from the sale of $22 million series B Bonds bearing interest of 5% and maturing June 1, 1962, have been expanded. Series B bonds had also carry stock purchase warrants entitling the purchaser of each $500 bond to buy 15 shares of treasury stock for $12 per share up to April 1, 1958, and thereafter up to April 1, 1960, for $15 per share. Results from this approval had also came with a special general meeting for shareholders that was aimed at approving a proposal to increase the Company's authorized capitalization from 5,000,000 to 6,000,000 shares of which 4,450,000 were issued.
It was the initial success of extensive diamond drilling that was carried out under the direction of Mr. Ralph J. Benner, BSc, the company's Geologist, was followed up in order to outline a tonnage of commercial grade, in the northeastern portion of the property on the southwest shore of Quirke Lake. Success which was achieved through exploration phase would only permit negotiations for the sale of precipitates and for production at a 5,700 ton per day rate. Diamond drilling that was taken out subsequently by Consolidated Denison Mines would indicate the continuity of the main ore horizons that had only indicated a great amount of tonnage. Mining along with milling plans were also designed in such a manner as to permit expansion to the possible rate of 10,000 tons per day as required. During this time it was the phase of sinking two shafts and the construction of a complete surface plant, with all ancillary services as need was being constructed on schedule with deadlines. Construction work which had only face with extreme difficulties in the building of this project would target a production date of January, 1, 1957.
Proven factors shortly had after resulted in strong indication of the successful outlining of a large commercial ore-body by diamond drilling in the early part of the year. These indications had rather proceeded as the Board of Directors would end up deciding to proceed with plans for bringing this property to the production stage as rapidly as possible. By March, 1955, it was decided to locate the No. 1 Shaft in the north central position of the property and the No. 2 Shaft to about 2,700 feet south. Contract work which was fulfilled had been done by the R. M. Way & Company, who became consulting engineers, were engaged to prepare full plans for the concentrator and surface plant as well as time and cost studies. The actual site for the No. 2 Shaft, along with the grinding plant, and concentrator areas had been located by May and an access road was completed from the site of No. 1 Shaft to the main road which is connected to Highway 17 some 18 miles east of Blind River. Other preparations would shortly be made as the main road was being presently prepared as highway. Further establishments had resulted in the completion of loop roads that would end up connecting the No. 1 and No. 2 Shafts and the mill together. These roads were only partially completed as the were yet to be properly surfaced, which was only experience with difficulties due to the rugged nature of the terrain in the area. Extensive work was followed by clearing operations during the summer months which were carried at the site for all of these projects as well as staff dwelling. Following negotiations with Ontario Hydro, the main 44,000 volt line to the property was completed by September and a full telephone service installed by October. Construction that was done during this time was also followed by a siding which was 1,000 feet in length and 330 feet in depth was purchased east of Spragge, Ontario, and with the co-operation and assistance of the C. P .R. was ready for use by September.
During August clearing for the location of housing for the construction crews which included sub-trades, personnel of which is estimated will reach 1,00 at peak effort, were commenced. By December, 1955, the Cookery, cookery quarters, sub-contractor offices and quarters, first aid, and radio room along with an H type bunkhouse were completed. A staff house which was capable of housing 25 to 30 key personnel was also planned and was completed by the end of the year. By this time, clearing had also been commenced on a housing project for key personnel located between the No. 1 and No. 2 Shaft by December had been started on some 15 houses. A contract for construction of the surface plant was also let to B. Perini & Sons Canada, Limited, and in October this firm commenced erection of camps and located purchasing and despatching office at the railroad siding. As preparations were being made it was also reported that an excellent supply of gravel was located some distance from the main plant site at the mine. Gravel which was found had also been place for ready use as excavations for the forms and erection of concentrator buildings were started, and the grinding plant area was located so that by the end of the year everything was ready for an intensive pre-production construction program in 1955.
By 1955, it was reported that a total of 55 feet of shaft sinking was completed, which the shaft collar was poured and temporary head-frame and the auxiliary buildings erected by the end of April, 1955. Actual sinking of the five compartment shaft, which was 16 ft 8" x 13 ft. 2 1/2", with two skip compartments that was begun in June 1, and by the end of the year it had reached a total depth of 1,365 feet. By the end of 1955, it was reported the this shaft was now completed to 1,860 feet below the shaft collar of the mine workings. During mapping it was evident that a bed of limestone, which was believed to be useful within the concentrator, was encountered near the 400-foot horizon, and a station, loading and spill pockets were cut at the 450 and 600-foot levels respectively so that this can be easily mined when and if required. Other development work was aimed at cutting a station for the 14,000 cubic foot pump station at the mines 1,200-foot horizon where it was planned to install two pumps with a total capacity of 1,100 gallons per minute.
Development that was done at the No. 2 Shaft had resulted in designing this underground structure to have seven compartments in 1955, which was 15 ft. 4 1/2" x 27 ft. 11 1/2", with four skip compartments that was place under development in June. Plans for the actual sinking were delayed till about September owing to the preparation for the grinding plant and various service buildings. By this time, the sinking of No. 2 Shaft was commenced in Mid-September, which was deepened to 55 feet and the collar was poured in November, 1955. It was the components and temporary wood frames which were assembled and the foundations for the compressors and the two six-foot diameter sinking units were erected. As development had progress it was at this point that the No. 2 Shaft would reach the 500-foot horizon of the mine workings on April, 15, 1956.
By this time it was plans that were focus on additionally mining the ore-body that were drawn up by the company's staff in regard to adapting trackless mining methods. Senior staff members who have held positions of top responsibilities in three different regions where this type of operation was employed which designed a method to use for the most modern trackless machinery ever developed.
The main concentrator and surface plant had mainly been based on a wide experience in the Eldorado and Beaverlodge areas as well as in Blind River. It was the R. M. Way & Company that would design the main plant which was incorporated by the most modern layout and engineering. Flow sheet had also been developed by the above firm and Mr. R. W. Mancantelli, the company's Mill superintendent, a metallurgist of wide experience, had formerly became in charge of the Beaverlodge Concentrator. It was the onset of the radioactivity division of the Department of Mines, Ottawa, who was the lending assistance in the development of the flow sheet. Mr. Mancantelli had also visited uranium plants in South Africa to acquaint himself first-hand with their methods and machinery, some of which would beemployed in the company's concentrator. Mr. Robert Porter of Salt Lake City, who has had extensive expereince in flow sheets in Canada and South Africa, had been engaged to design the Ion Exchange section of the mill.
Historical Photos of Consolidated Denison Uranium Mine's Property.
It was within 1956, when sinking of the No. 1 and 2 Shafts was progressing at a rapid rate that was far more advanced then most mine sites. At the time, it was stated that the No. 1 Shaft was engineered to have five compartments, and was sunk to a vertical depth of 1,856 feet below the surface. Major construction was also taking place near this shaft that included the erection of the Head-Frame, Shaft House, and Service Building, Heating Plant, and Fan House, Warehouse, and Dry House, Machine Shop, Pump House, Assay Office, and Boiler Plant. Even far more installations became made when two double drum Canadian Ingersoll Rand Hoists were being installed for permanent use at the No. 1 Shaft. Development from shaft sinking had rather engineered the cage hoist to be 6 feet, and skip hoist was 12 feet in diameter. With the progression of sinking, the No. 1 Shaft was well off when a loading pocket, and Spill Pocket became completed by July, 1956, Production and hoisting of the ore was officially started on August, 1956, when the sinking phase was completed. Delays had shortly after occurred when the erection of the steel headframe was place around the structure. By October of that year, the company was well off with its installation of the 12-diameter skip hoist in order to commence underground development. Close to the end of 1956, the No. 1 Shaft was entirely completed, and self contained with the engineering offices housed within the headframe, and with its own shops, warehouse, compressors, and change house. It was at this time when the mining plant alone was able to handle a capacity of 3,000 tonnes of ore. Other statement had stated that the ore-body was officially cut at a depth of 1,580-foot horizon. Further examinations within this time period had resulted in width of 18 feet with a grade of 0.20% Uranium Oxide Content U3O8. Underground development at the time had cut a station in order to fit the plant for the mine ventilation, and to connect with the main station was cut at the ore horizon. A new station known as the “Main’ was also opened up on the 1,600-foot level, and became extended by 1,100 feet of lateral work. Most of the work was concentrated in confining engineering plans towards developing rooms about 22 by 16 feet. From all the work completed there was 35,000 tonnes of ore that became stockpiled, which contained low grade material that was mine from the main station area. Grading of the mined ore within November, and December, 1956, had average 0.19% Uranium Oxide. Per ton, when 20,000 tonnes became treated. Development at the time was focus on directing operations in accordance to diamond drill hole 10, which indicated 0.21% Uranium Oxide over 22 ½ feet. Most of this diamond drilling program was rather also done on an island that was 4,000 feet to the east. Mining operations were confined to the room-and-pillar methods, where trackless mining equipment was initiated in the latter part of 1956.
Sinking of the No. 2 Production Shaft was additionally commenced within the beginning of February, and was commenced from a depth of 81 feet. From the time it was continued onward, the shaft would end up reaching a total depth of 1,845 feet below the surface. The production shaft was rather known to have also been vertical with 8 compartments. Much of the need structures were also build when a hoist house, and service building was completed at the No. 2 Production Shaft. In addition to this, the company had also place the much need engineering plans towards the Crusher, and Grinding Plant. Within this time period, the crusher, and grinder plant was near completion which was able to handle 6,000 tonnes per day. No additional equipment was installed at the 6,000 ton per day crusher, and grinding plant, and was laying at the mine site ready to be place into operation. As the historical Denison Mine continued to expanded, two Canadian Ingersoll Rand Double Drum hoists of 12-foot diameter, and a XVH2 compressor were awaiting to be put into operation. Construction was also followed by the development of three large H-Shaped bunk houses, each consisting of two Bulter Buildings with a corridor between, were erected, as well as 35 smaller buildings to house the workforce. Additionally, the company had also place capital towards building 103 houses, in Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada. There was also a ventilation adit that was 13 by18 feet, which was sunk, at 15 degrees, from the surface to an already excavated ventilation station at 125 feet below the collar of the shaft.
1957 – Consolidated Denison Mines, Limited
Expansions at the No. 2 Main Shaft were rather continued onward when the shaft was now reaching a depth of 2,776 feet. This had allowed the company to cut a main station on the 2,465-foot level, a control station at 2,633 feet, and a loading station at 2697 feet. Mining at the No. 2 shaft was done by initiating the room and pillar methods of mining, and by using trackless equipment for operations purposes. More development was followed by a pair of strike headings, which were 40 feet apart became driven at a right angle to the main five-entry system between the two shafts. Most of the large production opening were rather 25 feet in height, and had been engineered to exploit the uranium oxide ore. The much smaller production opening was mainly aimed at keeping ahead of knowing ground conditions, and grading, and had measured 16 by 12 feet. From this development, the larger production openings served as an airway, and the smaller ones were designed as a return airway. Development of these areas became so extensive as they had been engineer to allow an interpassage for the trackless equipment. Lateral development at the No. 2 Shaft had officially commenced after the Steel Headframe change over in August, 1957. Prior to this, it had allowed for the cutting of stations, pockets, control crosscuts, raises, ore pass raises and sumps. Much of the ore-pocket at the time was engineered to serve for the skip units, which were about to be operated in two compartments. It was also in 1957, when the second half of this development was scheduled to be completed on May, 1958. For the most part, this completion would allow the company to work at even greater production rates of 3,000 tons per day. Other major construction at the No. 2 Shaft was aimed at completing the Underground Ventilation, and Air heating system by the following year.
Construction of the No. 1 Main-Shaft was rather completed by the end of January, 1957, and was awaiting to be place into operating order. Far more construction was shortly after continued when the No. 1 Shaft was serviced with two 42-inch belts, one was used for the incline between the No. 1 and 2 Shafts, and the other to the northeast workings. A third 42-inch belt was rather being engineered on the workings to the south-east, and was scheduled for completion by May, 1958. Lateral development within this time period was also largely aimed at upscaling the production rates to 7,000 tonnes of ore per day. Prior to this, the incline between the No. 1 and No. 2 Shafts was also completely connected in the third week of December, 1957. It was rather a major development phase that did not only give better means of ventilation, and auxiliary exits, but a 2,700-foot cross-section of uranium oxide ore. Diamond drilling that was done in all had amounted to 24 underground holes, totalling 6,999 feet in length. From all hoisting that year, the mine had rather operated a heavy production rates when 591,817 tonnes was taken, and 621,444 tonnes was broken ore.
Milling, and crushing of the ore was officially commenced on April, 1, 1957, and had its own average capacity of 3,433 tonnes per day by December. Recovery, and Extraction rates had also rose significantly 94.7%, and the average recovery rate was 92.05%. After being further treated it became that the grade of the ore had amounted to 2.63% Uranium Oxide per ton. Milling that was done had ended up processing, and treating a total of 612,911 tonnes with an average millhead recovery grade of 2.63%. From all ore treated it became reported that the mill had produce a total recovery of 1,353,947.1 pounds of uranium oxide.
Construction at the time was aimed at getting extraction building fully completed and into production. This had also followed by the much needed mechanical, piping, and electrical installations in order to be sufficient for treating 3,000 tonnes of ore per day. Some of the other buildings that were completed had included storage tanks, a pump house, chlorate building, and assay building in order to achieve this production rate. The Denison Mine at the time had also hired on a workforce of 747 employees who became hired under the direction of John Kostuik who was the general manage of the mine.
1958 - Consolidated Denison Mines, Limited
In 1958, the Consolidated Denison Mines, Ltd, would not commence further shaft sinking within this time period of operating. By this time, the company was well off with Denison Uranium Mine when trackless drilling loading combination had occurred within the strike headings. This had resulted in a savings of 60 cents per ton over the regular comparable conventional operations. Most of the use of trucks, and shuttle cars were rather an improvement, and had kept the working at 100% in ore. For the most part, this had eliminated expensive, and time-consuming development work in waste. One of the ways that this mine had proven to be satisfactory in production was by transporting the ore on conveyor belts.
From all development completed a total of 78,808 feet was completed during the operating year of 1958. A total of 39,816 feet was entirely confined to in rooms that varied in height from 8 to 35 feet, and in width from 25 to 30 feet. In addition to this, a total of 39,992 feet was from development, and airways, varying in height from 9 to 35 feet, and in width from 16 to 25 feet. From both shafts there was a total of 1,860,725 tonnes hoisted containing 2.46 pounds of Uranium Oxide per ton. Development ore within this time period had amounted 738,410 tonnes with an average of 2.24 pounds of uranium oxide per ton. For the most part, it became stated that the ore from the No. 1 shaft had contained a total average of 2.64 pounds of uranium oxide per ton for 1,176,319 tonnes. Production taking from the No. 2 Denison Shaft had amounted to 684,406 tonnes that contained an average of 2.15 pounds of Uranium Oxide per ton.
By 1958, the Consolidated Denison Mines, Ltd. Had completed the installation of a 42-inch conveyor, that was 1,000 feet long. Within this time period the newly installed conveyor was mainly erected on the southwest side of the No. 1 Denison Mine Shaft. There was also a 700-foot extension that became added to the northeast belt. In addition to this, there was also a 700 foot in length cable of 48 inches that became expanded from the No 2 Shaft, towards the No. 1 Shaft. Following these installations there was also an identical unit that had a length of 700 feet to the south of the No. 2 Shaft, and was almost completed. With these installations complete, it was shortly after stated that the No. 2 Shaft would be capable of handling 140,000 tonnes of ore per month.
Prior to development it was also in 1958, when ore and waste pass systems at the No. 2 Shaft became completed on June. Other development also followed suit when a control station, and loading pocket control was completed with four compartments. This expansion had also resulted in the completion of a spill pocket, and the 3 and 4 compartments were completed for skip hoisting in November. Among this expansion it became reported that the warehouse, and underground shops were 70% completed at the No. 2 Shaft. Further installations also occurred when two 72-inch mine ventilation fans, with 120,000 cubic feet per minute each that had an assembled 6.5-inch water gauge became added underground. Much of this had also included 96-inch exhaust fan, with 240,000 cubic feet per minute at 6.5-inchs water gauge, and had also been place at the No. 1 Shaft. A huge amount of diamond drilling was rather accomplish in which had consisted of 1,434 underground holes, totalling 37,117 feet in length.
Milling operations at the Denison Uranium Mine had been operated throughout 1958. It was at this time when milling was extensively increased in order to have a production rate of 5,101 tonnes of ore per day. This was also followed by another increase to 6,047 tonnes per day within November, and December. Extractions from the uranium oxide treatment process had also been done at a recovery of 94.63%. Ore that was broken during the operating year of 1958, had amounted to 1,897,870 tonnes of ore. From this production, the mill had process a total of 1,861,779 tonnes of ore containing an average millhead of 2.46 pounds of Uranium Oxide. From all uranium ore process it became stated that the company was able to recover a total of 4,239,761 pounds of Uranium Oxide.
Much of the majority of construction that was started in 1957, had been officially completed within 1958. In regards to this the stainless-steel columns within the wooden agitators became redesigned in order to improve performance. From this, the pan feed in which had carried the ore from the No. 2 and from the No. 1 Shaft truck bin to the jaw crusher, was completed in February. Even more changes became made when additional ventilations units became erected above the leaching section. Further installations were also taking place when a new 12-inch water line between the main pumphouse, and the concentrator, together with a high-head water pump was installed. With this completed the company also had replace the wood stave pipes carrying pulp from the grinding plant to the extraction plant with steel ones. There was also a new high-end gasoline driven pump for fire protection purposes installed on the surface. As the Denison Mine project continued to expand the company had also added an additional low pressure compressor at the power house within the extraction plant. In order to keep up with increasing production there 3,300 cubic foot per minute high pressure air unit installed at the No. 2 Shaft. Additions also became made to administration building that was officially occupied by February, 1958. Other work was also focus on completing the service building at the No. 2 Shaft within this time period of operating, and had been nearly finish by the end of 1958.
The small community site of Elliot Lake was also expanded by the company when 160 dwellings were added, and occupied by Denison Employees. Prior to this, there were also 89 apartment units commenced, which became occupied by the end of 1958. This was also followed by the completion of a recreation building for the families of several Denison Mine Employees. Even a great amount of people had become employed at the mine site as it had occupied a workforce of 1,500 workers.
1959 –Consolidated Denison Mines, Limited
Development at the historical Denison Uranium Mine within 1959, had amounted to 30,425 feet of drifting, and 401 feet of raising. It was at this time when the company had planned extensive supervision, engineering, and planning to ensure maximum efficiency. This had rather resulted in a success within the program when costs had drop by $1.53 per ton in operating expenses. Improvements which were made towards the mining efficiency had rather been related to the development of single-entry panels, the establishment, and accentuation of budget controls for labour, equipment, and supplies, and installations of belt conveyor as a low-cost method for the transportation of ore. Much of these savings that were establish had also came from the capitalization of working places, and the reduction of indirect labour. Other efforts in improving costs were made to the mechanization of the mine, and plant were still being evolved, as future progress in this field would result in reductions of overall costs.
A much-needed positive planning program was being prepared for 1960 towards the introduction and development of a method whereby ore could be scrapped from stopes directly on to the conveyor belt. Most of this procedure will result in the complete elimination of intermediate cycle haulage from the stope to the conveying belts. Further statements from a company prospective had stated that this would made a redetection in a number of haulage vehicles. Not only would this eliminate the use of haulage equipment but it would also reduce the labour, and maintenance needed for operations. In addition to the program that was in progress, it had brought substantial savings in labour, and materials, through improvements in work procedures, metallurgy, and recovery, spurred progress towards the extraction plant. From this the company had nearly completed its own change over from conventual grinding with steel balls to that with pebble balls.
Progression from the development and mining of the ore had rather became successful from the transportation of ore on conveyor belts. Other areas towards mine improvements were made from the use of trackless drilling loading methods. Studies were also being made towards dealing with stress concentrations as a function of opening width to the pillar size. Most of this had also resulted in a succession of stope widths that were increased from 25, 35 45, and 60 feet, and finally in selected areas, to 100 feet. It was also in addition to these greater widths, that were in conjunction with direct scarping methods to panel conveyors that connected to main line arteries.
During 1959, there was a total of 80,399 linear feet of development done, in which 46,585 feet were in pilot openings, 8 by 8 feet in size. For the most part, this work did not only prepare the tonnage moved during the year, but had also developed a further 2,000,000 tonnes of positive grade ore. From all development that year, there was 8,575 tonnes of waste that was broken during that year. Production of mining the ore had resulted in 2,090,490 tonnes from both shaft operations with a grade of 2.56 pounds of Uranium per ton. From this tonnage produce the No. 1 Shaft had amounted to 1,040,576 tonnes with an average grade of 2.59 Lb. per a ton of uranium. This production had also resulted in 1,049,914 tonnes with an average grade of 2.52 Lb. per ton of uranium from the No. 2 Shaft.
Some expanding had also occurred during the year as the No. 1 Shaft North-East Conveyor became extended to a further 800 feet, and the South-West Conveyor a further 930 feet. There was also a flight of 680 feet which was placed within the center section between the two shafts in order to move ore to the No. 2 shaft. Prior to this expansion there was also an additional 2,400 feet of conveyor that was erected to the east of the No. 2 Shaft. The total development footage on a single plane to December, 31st. 1959, had amounted to 88,076 feet of drifting, 1,611 feet of raising. Diamond drilling within this time period had amounted to 1,818 underground drill holes, totalling 43,130 feet in length.
Broken ore within this time period of operating had amounted to 2,189,216 tonnes of ore that was also hoisted. From all production, the company was able to process, and treat a total of 2,046,250 tonnes of ore. Milling during this time period had ended up processing 5,672 tonnes of ore averaging 2.56 Lb. of uranium per ton. Within 1959, the on-site mill had soon produce a total of 4,916,108 Lb. of Uranium Oxide.
Some of the construction during 1959, had included an addition to the rubber shop of 1,170 Sq. Ft., an inflammable solution, and paint storage building of 265 Sq. ft., an addition to the grinding plant of 1,812 sq. ft. and a security gate house. Following this it was also stated that all the necessary equipment was installed to convert from steel ball grinding to autogenous or pebble grinding. There was also an addition of 2,412 feet of conveyor installations made underground, in which brought the total up to 7,022 feet. Other changes were also made when the two 1,250 H.P. Skip hoists became equipped with semi automatic push button remote controls at the No. 2 Shaft.
1960 - Denison Mines, Limited formed
It was on March, 1960, when an amalgamation was made between the Consolidated Denison Mines, Ltd, and Can-Met Exploration, Ltd, to form Denison Mines, Ltd. The company all together was reconstructed to have a capitalization of 6,000,000 shares, in which 4,687,650 were issued. Prior to this amalgamation, the newly formed Denison Mines, Ltd. Had controlled the rights to the Denison Mine, and the Can-Met Mine. It was also within 1960 when mining and development operations became terminated at the Can-Met Uranium Mine on April, 1st, and was place on care and maintenance.
Development that was done at the Denison Uranium Mine had amounted to 21,604 feet of drifting. Operations at full capacity within this time period had became highlighted with the success of market cost-reduction program, and improvements within the grade of millheads. Within this time period, the average grade of 2.56 Lb. of Uranium per ton had increase to a millhead of 2.70 lbs per ton in 1960. Following this industrial engineering studies had become coupled with a system of plant wide budgetary. It was also in associations with through planning, and supervision that would reduce overall operating costs to $1.00 per ton then that in previous years. For the most part, this reduction was accomplished through the face of substantial increases in certain unit costs beyond the control of the company. Other statements had stated that most of these increases were 8 cents for acid, 2 cents for explosives, and steel products, and 2.5 cents for power. As these increases had occurred, the company would form the Denison Division under agreements to Unions representing employees under divisions.
Other issues had rise from the mechanization of accounting procedures which permitted the consolidation of clerical duties. Most of this procedure had accounted for the increase in the scoop, and promptness of reporting information. In regards to this feature, it had rather permitted the success in continuing the cost-reductions program. Further so, lower mining costs became achieved through the efforts of centralization of working places, direct scraping of run of mine ore to conveyors, the strict control of operating supplies, and from the studies in rock mechanics. Other associations towards these factors had rather became expected from the reduction of milling costs resulting from successful conversions to pebble grinding. Mining of the ore during 1960, had amounted to 1,862,384 tonnes, in which 781,996 tonnes was taken from the No. 1 Shaft, and 1,180,352 tonnes from the No. 2 Shaft. With a huge amount of ore hoisted, the company had completed 62,872 linear feet of development, in which 99% was entirely in ore. From all development completed, it became stated that this lineal program would end up preparing the tonnage mined, and establish indicated reserves of 2,500,000 extra tonnes. Other expansions had also included the extensions of the three main conveyor arteries to a combined distance of 1,550 feet. Prior to this change three conveyors that were 701, 495, and 804 feet had been relocated for the purpose of direct scaping from stopes. Following development extensive diamond drilling was undertaken that amounted to 1,681 underground holes, totalling 37,235 feet in length. It was also within this time period that the Can-Met Mine had actually adjoined the Denison Mine to the east of the south side boundary. The total development footage for the operating year of 1950 had amounted to 109,680 feet of drifting, and 1,511 feet of raising.
From all mining, the mill production during this time period had comprised of 2,013,846 tonnes of ore at a daily rate of 5,787 tons. An increase was rather made in the daily tonnage, but the over-all recovery would decrease to 93.04% from 93.55% in 1959. These drops became mainly caused due to the milling of highly contaminated ore, and to a lesser degree, from the lowering of the soluble iron content within the leaching solutions as a result of conversion from ball to pebble grinding. However, the plans within the cost reduction program had rather became extremely satisfactory in reducing over-all mining costs. For the first time ever, the Denison Uranium Mine was place on holiday shut down from July, 1st to the 17th, 1960. In general being, this was mainly caused from the results of necessary examinations, and maintenance that was impractical during operations. Several changes were also made when the ball mills were replaced by the Pebble grinding, and from magnesia precipitation to that of ammonia. Even more construction had followed suit, when a grinding plant sump of 1,225 Sq. Ft. was made, Other new equipment also became added that included and ammonia tank in the concentrator building with a capacity of 40 tons, and two elution towers in the concentrator boiler house. Uranium recoveries from the milling process within this time period had rather amounted to 5,437,846.2 lbs of uranium at 2.70 Lbs. per ton.
1961 – Denison Mines, Limited
Development which was undertaken in 1961, had amounted to 18,007 feet of drifting that was completed from underground. It was within this time period when approximately one third of the ore was being scraped directly from stopes to conveyors, and transported to production shafts. From previous haulage methods this had rather proved to be sufficient towards lowering expense in haulage costs. Mining costs had amounted to 5% per ton or 11% per a pound of uranium, which was lower then that in 1960. This was also followed by rock mechanic studies in enabling engineering staff to perfectly layout on a sound technical basis, and the work proved to boarden. Prior to this, cost savings would also be continued due to the result of refinement of maintenance standards. Following the low cost saving it would also be contributed towards the improvement in development headings, in conveying and scraping, and with the conversion of the mine to use AN.FO. blasting agents. Hoisting during the operating period of 1961, had resulted in 2,032,911 tonnes of uranium oxide ore. From this production, the No. 1 Shaft produce 964,436 tonnes, and the No. 2 Shaft amounted to 1,068,475 tonnes. All development during that year had amounted to 53,941 linear feet that was driven in heading at various sizes, which was 97% entirely in ore. As development progress, the mine soon had reach a new positive ore reserve indication of 2,800,000 tonnes with a known average ore grade. Even diamond drilling within 1961, was so extensive when 1,656 underground holes, totalling 36,877 feet were driven. The establishment of development work had also increase to total lateral development footage. This increase had resulted in 127,687 feet of drifting, and 1,611 feet of raising.
Other major installations during 1960, had been aimed at replacing primary fans in order to improve ventilation conditions. Following this installation, the company would also construct an additional air heating plant near the No. 2 Denison Mine Shaft to handle increasing air flow of 4,000,000 Btu. Other structure also became place under construction that included a water recycling tank house. Equipment that became added had resulted in a direct oil fired warm air central heater of 4,000,000 btu. Per an hour. Most of this was done in order to provide the much-needed heat to the Mine Air Heating plant at the No. 2 Shaft. By this time the company had also place water softing equipment, along with the piping, platforms, and controls within the boiler house. In addition to this, it was rather required in order to recycle neutural water between the concentrator, and grinding plant.
There was also a leading progress towards expanding the conveyors by 1,179 feet in all directions. The first 600 feet of the conveyors northeast axis was being erected within the year end. Another conveyor known as Axis A was apart of the north-south conveying system which would reach its target limit by 1962. With target control being done the company had erected a new conveyor known as the north-south conveying system. Became commenced at a distance of 3,100 feet from axis A. Scheduled production of the North-South Conveying system was aimed at commencing operations in 1963.
Within 1961, the Denison Uranium Mine had seen progressive attainment of production, and performance targets then that in any previous years. Concentrations of the ore had also continued at full capacity with the exception of holiday shut down time from the last week of July, and the first week of August. There was also a market improvement within the grade of the ore treated from 2.70 Lbs. to 2.85 Lbs. of uranium per ton in 1961.
1962 – Denison Mines, Limited
Expansion along with mining, and production had continued to be the primary focus within the operating year of 1962. Most of this became followed by better improvements, and performance in lowering costs within all previous years of operation. Some of the best decreases in explosive costs had came from a reduction of 33 cents per ton broken. It became quite clear that the conversion of blasting operations to ammonium nitrate fuel oil blasting was far less costly at the time. Even haulage expenses were also reduced to an average of 30% for trucks, and shuttle services. Significant cost saving was also made in rock drill repairs that had decreased by 6.5% per a foot drilled, and slusher maintenance costs were reduced by 27% per ton handle. Development which was completed within the underground workings was rather done at small scale when 8,994 feet of drifting, and 108 feet of raising was done. Hoisting that became completed within the Denison Mine Project had amounted to 1,831,059 tonnes of uranium ore. From this production, the No. 1 Shaft produce 1,031,746 tons, and the No. 2 shaft had a production of 799,313 tonnes. By 1962, the company had rather completed the North-East Axis Conveyor line in order to service an excess of 4,000,000 tonnes of ore. Even more changes were made when an extension program was aimed at extending the line to 1,000 feet on the B Axis Conveyor. Plans at the time were being focus on making the conveyor Axis B the main north-south transportation artery for the mine. Exploratory programs in drilling had continued when there was 1.143 underground diamond drill holes, totalling 22,262 feet. The broken ore within the mine site during this period of operating had amounted to 1,808,011 tonnes. Rock Mechanic Studies had also contributed towards assisting the engineers within planning mining layouts on a scientific basis. Most of these studies were performed in conjunction with ground movements in order to investigate, and assess measuring techniques. Safety within the mine also became a project goal in ensuring the reduction of-30% in compensable accident frequency, and became exceeded by 6.8% in 1962.
Production from the milling facility had treated 1,828,993 dry tonnes of ore at an average daily rate of 5,680 tonnes. As treatment procedures continued onward there was a slight increase in grade then that in previous years, which indicated 2.88 Lbs of uranium per ton. Since production start this had rather establish what would have been known as the fourth consecutive year of improvement in grade. Other increase had also occur in regards to the control in the use of acid, chlorate, and steam had been realized throughout automation. With this taking place, it had now required some adjustments to the processing of the ore that was taking place at the Denison Mine Site.
1963 –Denison Mines, Limited
Within 1963, the Denison Uranium Property had now comprised of 124 claims within Townships 144, and 150, of the Blind River Area, in the Algoma District. Operations at the Denison Mine were focus on three main working where the U308 had a higher average grade then that in previous years. Ore within the Denison Uranium Mine were being extract to the North-East, and South-West of the No. 1 Shaft Operation in 1963. Prior to this, the remainder of the ore was stated to have been mined to the south of the No. 2 Shaft Operation within limits of the installed conveyor system. At the time, this became rather replaced by ore that was being mind to the west, and mid shaft sections of the Denison Mine Project. Development at the time had provided for a major north-south transportation axis which was continued 3,000 feet east of the shafts. Other expansions had also occurred when a conveyor of the north-east area became extended by an additional 246 feet. With the mine expanding in size this results in developing another ventilation raise that was started towards an island on Quirke Lake. Most of this development phase was done in order to provide an opening for the third surface ventilation on the island. Development within that time period was also focus on providing access to the ready for mining ore reserves underground.
Mining operations at the Denison Mine had continued to provide the tonnage need for the concentrator. A total of 1,661,397 tonnes of ore, and 36,545 tonnes of waste was taken from the underground working that year. From this production, the No. 1 Shaft produce 1.356.601 tonnes of ore, and the No. 2 had produce the remainder 223,388 tonnes. It was also at this point in time when the average grade of the ore mined had graded 3.34 Lbs. of Uranium per tonne. Company officials at the time were also minimizing revenue, and coping with the existing situation which made it necessary to increase the cut off grade. Much of the waste that was produce became either used for the haulage ways, or was disposed as back-fill in the worked-out rooms.
Other steps were made towards automatic neutralization of mine water that was pumped to the surface. Much of this had been made from the conversion of lime to ammonia for better control, and a reduction towards labour costs. These budgetary controls, and performance standards had continued to show an effect on the company’s reduction cost program. Further savings were added towards the unit operating, and maintenance costs on conveyor haulage, which was reduce by an additional 16%, and the rock drill maintenance showed a decline of 8%. Lateral work within the underground workings had amounted to 8,816 feet of drifting, and 173 feet of raising. Diamond drilling that was done during 1963, had consisted of 1,584 underground holes, totalling 25,198 feet in length. The total development footage to the end of 1963, had amounted to 145,087 feet of drifting, and 2,302 feet of raising.
Tonnage that was treated in 1963, was reduced to 1,586,600 dry tonnes, but the ion and precipitation areas were kept a full capacity due to higher uranium content. A small decrease was made towards the amount of ore that was processed, and had totalled 4,444 tonnes per day. From this processing, the average recovery of extractions was increased to 94.72%. Improvements within the extraction performance became credited towards the better use of the automated acid, steam, and chlorate control. This was also followed by the better means of additional recycling of solution, and pulp which became feasible with the lower input tonnage. Millhead averages during this time period were set at 3,34 Lbs. of uranium per ton, which recovered 5,078,760 pounds of uranium oxide. Leach data at the time of operations was recorded by being mechanically punched on cards, and were statistically analyzed in the tabulating department. Information which was implied had rather led to improvements in grade of the final product to the highest economical percentage believed possible within the circuit. Following these studies, it was at this point when research was under taken, and the much need equipment was purchase in order to establish a flow sheet for reactor grade products.
1964 – Denison Mines, Limited
Underground mining operations at the Denison Uranium Mine were focus on extracting ore to the East, and West side of No. 1 Shaft. Some mining operation at much slower pace were also carried out in areas of the No. 2 Shaft within Panels 36, and Panel 45. More improvements, and confinement of work was also being aimed at preparing areas for future production in 1964. This was followed by further development work in open headings that will serve as conveyor-ways, and access-ways within the axis “B” System.
Major improvements were also made toward the ventilation system when a road-way was driven within 1964. Most of this road-way was aimed at providing better ventilation towards the most westerly workings of the No. 2 Shaft. This was also followed by better ventilation in other down dipp headings of the southeast section of the No. 1 Shaft. One of the conveyors known as the No. 9 was known to have server the northeast area, and was once apart of the conveyor artery to the No. 1 shaft, and became extended further by 345 feet.
Other major development project was aimed at driving a third ventilation raise towards the surface. This resulted in developing an incline heading that was driven for a distance of 1,200 feet Most of this had taken place to the most northern part of the workings in the mine which was driven to an island on Quirke Lake. Following this development, there was a steel fenced concrete collar prepared on the island to ensure the sealing of fractures to the bottom of the lake. Further development work had also been focus on developing a raise from the underground workings to connect with this collar. Prior to development, the ventilationway would be enlarge to provide a much large supply of air to the underground workings. A slight decrease had occurred within the broken ore hoisted as it amounted to 1,232,742 tonnes, and a increase of waste ore amounted to 43,434 tons. Much of the waste produce had came from development of the ventilation raise, and preparations for the conveyor ways. Ore that was hoisted during 1964, had amounted to 1,280,184 tonnes, which 1,151,247 tonnes came from the No.1 Shaft, and 128,937 tonnes from the No. 2 Shaft. Ore which was mined from the underground workings had an average millhead of 3.14 lbs. per ton of ore. Most policies at the time were aimed at mining high-grade ore pockets which were consider to have been apart of the selective mining program. Lower grade ore at the time was rather left behind after being logged, and provisions were made to economically recover them. Other projects towards the mine operation were aimed at installing an economical water supply system to the underground workings. Lateral work that was done in 1964, had amounted to 8,551 feet of drifting, which includes 732 feet in waste driven at an angle of 33 degrees to Puhky Island, and 146 feet of raising. By the end of 1964, the Denison Mine project had a total development footage of 153,638 feet of drifting, and 2,448 feet of raising. Some 1,214 diamond drill holes, totalling 23,288 feet was completed from underground, and two holes, totalling 1,131 feet from the surface.
Further blasting had also occurred when a trench was blasted near the ventilation opening, from a previously drilled diamond drill hole. In other words, this blast was made towards the lake as it would enable water to flow by gravity to the installed intake control to the collar of the hole. Expansions were also aimed at enlarging the hole in order to supply the required amount of volume of water. Most of this was aimed a reducing the use of pumps which provided the much-needed water pressure on the up dip of the No. 1 Shaft. Research at the time was also being carried out on a large phase, including bacteriological leaching underground, the recovery of uranium from the underground solution, and the production of a reactor grade products. This resulted in new installations when a solvent extraction pilot plant was set up, and confirmed that a nuclear grade specification could be produce at the Modification Plant. With no other choice, the company had also completed an extensive amount of repiping within the milling facility in order to recycle solutions at reduction cost rate. Even dilution issues at the time were eliminated wherever possible, and this combined effort had resulted in a 75% decrease on the freshwater demand. As the tailings rather became large it was stated that the tailing disposals were further impounded by the construction of two dams.
Milling during 1964, had amounted to treating a total of 1,586,600 tonnes of ore containing an average grade of 3.14 lbs. per ton. Most of this was done at an daily average of 3,573 tonnes per day, and the extraction rate was at 95.57%. From all treatments and concentration, the milling facility had ended up producing a total of 3,950,364 pounds of uranium oxide by the end of 1964. New construction at the time was also followed by the completion of an insulated pumphouse at Benner Lake.
1965 – Denison Mines, Limited
By 1965, the company had continued to confine its operations to the east, and west sections of the No. 1 Shaft. Prior to this, the company was able to maintain emphasis during that year for the overall scheduled development at the mine to the east. Most of the east section was being prepared to be serviced by a conveyor-way, and access-way within the Axis B System. In regards to this it would provide a new block of ore that would commence production levels by the operating year of 1967. As development became extensive there was an interconnecting roadway that was driven between the two shafts. Its main purpose was aimed at servicing the eastern section of the mining operation, and would provide an alternate and direct route to the one that was used in the western section. Goals along with provisions in overall development, increase in capacity, and improving ventilation programs were rather met on a satisfactory scale.
From development, there was a rather decrease in production when only 884,527 tonnes were produce. Production that was taken from the No. 1 Shaft had amounted to 813,966, and the remainder of the ore was taken from the No. 2 Shaft. An overall development and servicing program was undertaken in order keep up with the mineable ore reserves. With development extensively continued the mine would also produce 49,931 tonnes of waste that was broken from all various development headings. Prior to mining there was also a slight decrease in grading when the ore had average 2.93 lbs. of uranium per ton. Several places that were taken up for assay had indicated the same average grade as that produce in the millhead. Other problems within the mining industry, and elsewhere had suffered from a lack of skilled workers in the miner and tradesmen classification. Due to the lack of skillful men there was also a training program that was put in place in order to up the skills needed. Most of this became establish as a joint venture sponsorship with the Ontario Department of Labour, under the federal government program No. 4. Overall lateral development within 1964, was also increased when 10,598 feet of drifting, and 666 feet of raising was done. From all diamond drilling done there was 1,022 underground holes completed, totalling 16,069 feet in length. Lateral development footage throughout the entire project had now consisted of 164,236 feet of drifting, and 3,114 feet of raising.
Hoisting within this time period of operating had also amounted to 874,544 tonnes of broken ore. From this production, the mill had ended up treating a total of 889,391 tonnes of ore containing 2.93 lbs. of uranium per ton. As a decrease in production had occurred the mill would also only produce a total of 2,624 tonnes of ore per day. From this production, the mill was able to operate at a rate of 95.27%, in which had produce 2,561,164 lbs. of uranium oxide in 1965. Major construction was also undertaken when there was an addition to the mill made which resulted in a new leaching area. Some of the newly added equipment would included a propane gas tank, three vaporizers, 1 propane gas burner, 1 air blower, 2 ventilation fans, 12 Pachuca tanks.
1966 – Denison Mines, Limited
One of the main sources of radioactives that became a high demand within 1966, was the need for Yttrium oxide. Most of this was caused due to it highly successful applications in improving the brightness, and trueness of colour rendition in colour television picture tubes. It had also proved to be a second new application towards the improvement of the correction colour balance of mercury vapour lamps. With this out at large the company had decided to seize its chance at implementing a plant for the extraction of Yttrium which was a by-product of uranium. Following this increase the company had other plans in being the worlds largest supplier of yttrium oxide by 1967. With expectations of demand increase this would also provide the Denison Mine with a life time of production in Yttrium Oxide processing. This was for the most part one of the historical events that change ways in mining at the Denison Uranium Project in 1966.
With mining continuing to take place the company had confined it operations to the northeast and southwest area of the No. 1 Shaft. Ore at the time was also reported to have been transported by the present conveyor system to the No. 1 Shaft operation. All production from these areas would also be phased out from these areas as the Axis B conveyor system is completed, and ore extraction shifts are place at this location. Further development work within this area was continued onward, and other plans were made towards developing a crusher station. Following this development there was also “Development headings” that were driven to explore and develop the ore-body to the east and west of the No. 2 Shaft workings. As further development continued, the company had rather increase its mineable ore reserves to 3,200,000 tonnes at the time.
Even the ventilation capacity became increased from 300,000 cfm. To 500,000 cfm within the early part of 1966. Prior to this the company had also focus on providing additional work to improve the ventilation system from underground. In many cases, the mine had various vitiate and fresh air streams that were once isolated by a series of concrete block walls, urethane foamcoated bulkheads, overpasses, and underpasses. As development progress, the company would end up starting a 6,100-foot drive to the east in order to breakthrough the Can-Met lower workings. All of this development was also confined to making the two Can-Met shafts as auxiliary ventilations for fresh air as expansions continued. Broken ore tonnage during the year had increased to 975,486 tonnes of ore, while the waste tonnage was 21,067 tonnes. It was at this time when a total of 913,449 tonnes of ore was taken from the No. 1 Shaft, and 65,935 was hoisted from the No. 2 Shaft. From all production, it was reported that the average grade of the ore which was hoisted had contained 2.86 lbs. of uranium per ton.
1971 - Denison Mines, Limited
In 1971, the Denison Mine along with Rio Algom was the only two companies left within the uranium, and yttrium business. It was at this point in time when Denison Mines had mainly thrived on long term marketing assistance from the Canadian Government. Work which was completed had rather continued onward as the company had focus on further developing, and producing uranium, and yttrium oxide.
1972 - Denison Mines, Limited
Within the operating year of 1972, Denison Mines, Limited had soon merge with Stanrock Uranium Mines, Limited. For the most part, this merge was completed due to the fact that both companies were working on the same contiguous mining area. Other statements from this merge had rather led to rationalization of these two operations, and the recalculation of ore reserves in 1972.
1975 - Denison Mines, Limited
During the operating year of 1975, the Denison Mines, Limited were rather progressing with their mining operation. It was during this time period when Denison Mines, Limited was focus on increasing its milling production from 6,000 tonnes to 7,100 tonnes of ore per day. For the most part, this was followed by further expansions of increasing the capacity in 1976.
1977-78- Denison Mines, Limited
Denison Mines, Limited had continued onward with their production of Uranium Oxide at the historical Denison Uranium Mine. Within this time period of operating the Denison Mine Mill had reach a capacity of 7,100 tonnes of ore per day. From all production during 1977, the mine was able to produce a total of 4,000,000 lbs. of uranium oxide. As production was increased it was state that the output would also be increased back to 5,000,000 lbs. of uranium oxide in 1978, and was expected to reach more then 10,000,000 lbs by the early 1980’s. It was later in 1977, when the company had lost its contracts to the Eldorado Mining, and Refining Company as the War had ended. With this down fall at stake, the company was able to rejuvenises it self by obtaining a major contract from Hydro One. Most of this contract was in regards to purchasing a total of 126,000,000 lbs. of uranium oxide over the period of 1980 to 2011. With this new contract at stake it was reported that the mill would be increase in capacity to 12,000 tonnes of ore per day. Following this major contract deal, Stanrock, and Can-Met Mines would re-open for the second time. It was also at this time when plans were aimed at rebuilding the Stanrock Mill in order to process a total of 3,000 tonnes of ore. In all production, the company had major goals as it was about to produce 15,000 tonnes of ore per day by 1987. Prior to this capacity increase, the company would also up its workforce from 1,500 to 3,400 people by 1984. This whole entire expansion program would continue within the operating years of 1978 to 1982
1979 - Denison Mines, Ltd.
During 1979, Denison Mines, Ltd., was working on a major expansion project which was aimed at reaching a planned target in order to meet orders totalling 189,000,000 pounds of Uranium Oxide. Most of this was aimed under contract basis as the deliveries for this total were aimed at being produced for the next 31 years. An anual production rate of 6,000,000 pounds of Uranium oxide was also planned for the company's production goal in 1979. The expansion program which was undertaken at Elliot Lake, which was expected to continue through 1985, includes provisions of extensive housing and other community facilities. The very first stage of this major expansion of the facilities will provide for an increased uranium production that presented a significant part of the year's activities. For the most part, a record number of tonnes were additionally milled during 1979. However, due to much lower grade material processed, uranium production was slightly less than that in the previous year of operating. Underground mining operations were also greatly effected by necessary development in the lower grade ore-blocks. Some of the highlights of Denison's developments at the Elliot Lake operations included: Long term plans in order to achieve maxinum recovery of the company's Elliot Lake Ore-bodies which were developed by the engineering group. The program during 1979, was aimed at consisting of two major targets with the objective of which is to produce and deliver to customers approximatly 6,000,000 pounds of U3O8 annually. Additionally this had doubled the underground mining capacity as the mining capacity was aimed at extracting 21,000 tons of ore daily on a five day week basis, which was compared with present rating capacity of 10,000 tons. In the end, this had doubled the 7,100 tons daily processing capacity of the central extraction plant to treat 15,000 tons of ore daily. In order to conduct and commence this expnasion program it would also involve detailed engineering, surface construction, and underground development along with construction projects. Programs which were conducted on surfaces had been highlighted by the completion of the 15 panel main airway raise, the completion of the No. 1 Shaft Dry, with capacity for 600 men, the completion of the 115 KV/44KV substation on surface and the completion of the Central Maintenance/Warehouse complex. It was also by this time that construction was also completed at the hydrological plant which included the new Yellowcake and reagent Storage area. Construction work had also progress satisfactory on the new neutral thickener area in the leaching area where structural steel erection is completed and ready for the installation of the twenty new Pachuca tanks in the acid filtration area. Extensive underground expansions were also nearing completion as the A Axis conveyorway southwest of the No. 1 Shaft and two main airways west and southwest from the main northwest intake airway raise had been completed. Further underground work would also be focus on the decline ramp that driven to the bottom of the No. 2 Shaft and construction was in progress for the new crusher and loading pocket facility at this shaft. This resulted in excavations that were in progress for the two new conveyorways, and the new southwest airway which is being driven had reached the Quirke Lake overthrust where grouting was in progress.
1980 - Denison Mines, Ltd.
It was with the completion of underground expansion at the main Denison Property in 1980, and the 15,000 ton per day processing plant in mid 1981, the principal segments of the expansion to an annual production rate of 6 million pounds of U3O8 starting in 1981 that will have been put in place. During 1980, a total of 2,987,584 tons was broken, which was up by 4% from previous years of mining. Further developing which was commenced in regards to the company development program that the largest yet planned at Denison, was essentially completed with 73,733 lineal feet of excavations mined. Results of new openings for ore transport and ventilation purposes were initiated in the areas to the south of the mine giving access to higher-grade ore. Some advantages were also met with the anual summer shutdown in order to complete work at the No. 2 Shaft to convert to the new ore-handling system that was adapted. This would also generally include the much anticipated speed up of the second production hoist from 1,300 to 2,200 feet per minute and the deepening of the shaft to connect to the new crusher and loading pocket complex. It was also the successful commisioning of this type of system that marks the completion of the largest project in the company's underground expansion program. Other development had included the new 1,920 foot conveyor, servicing the southern portion of the mine which was brought on-line at year end. Some new equipment had also been added in order to expand the capacity, as well as to replace older and less efficient machinery. A total of four new electric hydraulic drill jumbos were now accounted for 60% of production at Denison. This also resulted in adding a new seven cubic yard capacity load-haul dump machine that put together and had been presently under testing. Engineering that was done by a group of professionalize engineers had also been working with various manufactures to design and develop new low profile equipment which will be required. Milling operations at the Denison had amounted to 2,509,833 tonnes of ore averaging 1.87% U3O8 per ton that was milled during the year. Insight of previous records it was reported that this year had resulted in an officialised new record throughput for the existing hydrometallurgical plant. With this came the improvement of recovery that was 93.33% despite lower grades of ore, and 4,451,823 pounds of U3O8 that were produced, compared with 4,495,767 pounds in 1979.
It was also during 1980, which was highlighted by the successful commissioning of the semi-autogenous grinding plant. The new milling circuit that had proved to be capable of processing more than the 8,000 tons per day design capacity. Studies which were place on the new circuit had indicated that operating costs are projected and that substantial economies will be realized as compared to the conventional crushing and grinding process. It was also in the Hydrometallurgical plant that effort was continued towards improving process controls to increase recovery. In doing this, some success was generally realized as recoveries were slightly ahead of the previous year. It was also at this time that portions of the new plant were being commissioned as they become read. Ore stockpiled in 1980, and early 1981, was also expected to be processed by the end of 1981. Expansions which were completed had progressed fairly well in general areas with some downfalls taking place due to a fire in September which destroyed the new acid drum filter area that was a major setback to the schedule, but demolition and re-erection of the building to have taken place. The extraction plant would also be completed for it very first full capactiy of 15,000 tons daily by mid-1981. Underground expansions would also continue as the Frame Conveyorway was completed to provide ore transportation for mining the south area of the No. 2 Shaft.
Other improvements were made in 1980, as the ventilation system was further improved by development of fresh airways in the upper reef and the establishment of exhaust corridors through old workings. This had all resulted in fine tuning of the existing system which led to a significant reduction in radiation and dust levels in the active workings. The pilot intake air, to the south and west of the No. 2 Shaft, was broken through to the surface. This new facility, which was the longest vertical Alimak raise ever driven, would be slashed to a final diameter of 28 feet and was due for completion in late 1981. Air which would be taken from this raise would also serve portions of the Denison ore-body south of the No. 2 Shaft. On surface, environmental conditions were also improved, particularly in the crushing and grinding plants where new dust collecting equipment was installed. It was also in the hydrometallurgical plant, that environmental control equipment was updated in conjuction with new facilities in the expanded plant.
1981- Denison Mines, Ltd.
During 1981, Denison Mines would continue it large expansion of underground activity that would only coninute with a record 3,711,822 tons of broken ore. Estimates which were made during the previous year of mining and compared to the present rate were 24% above the previous year. It was also during this time period as new mining areas would be establish to the South of the No. 2 Shaft and west of No. 1 Shaft. Development was followed by the neccessary excavations in order to expand operations that had been compled in line with the long-term mining plan. The grade of ore which was hoisted had also been much lower in grade that in previous years, reflecting the preparation of areas for future mining operations. Companu expectations had rather reported that the grade was expected to be maintained at existing levels over the next several years.
Development which was undertaken in 1981, had been followed by new drilling and equipment incorporating with the latest technical advances that were purchased to convert the mechanized mining system to the lower stope heights that would become predominant. This at the time had resulted in utalizing special effort which was made in order to improve the efficentcy and safety of roof support systems. These efforts had also generally been establish by two mechanized, low profile, roof bolting test units which were manufactured to Denison's specifications that were undergoing production trails. Other projects included the completion and commissioning of the Kostuik Conveyor in the mid-year would additionally market the end of the major expansion at Shaft No. 2. All mining by this time had been confined to areas which were serviced with modern, high-capacity conveying systems. Problems were additionally met when a fire that had swept through the Can-Met conveyor in November of that year had resulted in a small loss of production.
Milling operations which were conducted during 1981, had resulted in 4,742,831 pounds of U3O8. This was generally taken from a total of 3,075,548 tonnes of ore averaging 1.68 lbs. per ton that was milled during the year. Much of the increase in tonnage processed had also relected on the start up of the new hydrometallurgical plant during the fourth quarter. It was at this time that the uranium recovery rate was being conducted at 91.0%, which was down from 93.3% in 1980. Most of this was generally considered to have been caused due to the lower grade ore which was processed and losses sustained while the new plant was being commissioned. During this time period it was the design capacity of plant which had been capable of treating 15,000 tons of ore per day that was reached for short time periods. By the year end, it was the processes control group that would identify and correct several deficiencies within the new plant, and recovery was returning to a much normal level for Denison Mine project.
Expanding that was undertaken in 1981, had involved expansion of the underground mining operations, processing, and housing facilities which was more than 75% complete. Work which was followed had also been aimed at further achieving development status at the No. 3 Shaft and additions to the ventilation systems had also been nearly completed. It was also at this time when a new production hoist had been installed at the No. 3 Shaft which was located on the Stanrock Section of the present Denison Properties. Lateral development which was undertaken had also been aimed at connecting the Stanrock underground workings to the Can-Met shaft with a ventilation airway that was being progressively developed. Some new production equipment was also brought into the Denison Property in oder to be used for underground mining operations and the No. 2 Shaft service complex was also completed. This had additionally been followed up by a program that was aimed at establishing fresh air in oder to be delivered for mining areas south of the No. 2 Shaft, which resulted in developing a major exhaust corridor.
Within 1982, Denison Mines, Limited had announce that the company would conduct a heap leaching test on 200,000 tons of low grade ore in 1983. A test which was undertaken on a 40,000-tonne bulk sample was carried out with encouraging results. During 1983, the Denison Mines, Limited had conducted a successful test to determine the feasibility of heap leaching chlorotic ore. It was within this time period when 20,000 tonnes of this ore was being mined by conventional methods, and would be stockpiled underground, and trickle leached.
1984-85 - Denison Mines, Limited
Mining operations within the operating year of 1984, had continued to operate at an expanding pace. Milling rates at the Denison Mine were also increased, and maintained at a daily rate of 12,000 tonnes of ore per day. By this time, the mill had treated a total of 1,875,000 tonnes of ore with an average grade of 1.79 lbs. of uranium oxide per ton. Denison Mines, Limited at the time was also placing plans in using heap leaching methods in order to mine low grade ore at a much lower cost than that of conventional mining methods. From experimental runs it was proven that a total of 65% of uranium was able to be extracted by this method of choice. Mining, and milling operations at the historical Denison Mine Project were continued throughout the operating year of 1985.
1986 - Denison Mines, Limited
It was in 1986, when Denison Mines, Limited had continued it production of uranium oxide in Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada. Statements on production from the first half of 1986, had recovered a total of 2,662,000 pounds of uranium oxide, which was a 12% reduction then that in previous year. As this had occurred it place a major down fall on the total revenue produce at the Denison Mine due to a lower delivery commitment.
1987 - Denison Mines, Limited
Denison Mines, Limited had continued mining and production at a normal scale during 1987. Following this it had proven the low grade bacterial leaching was quite successful then that carried out by conventional mining, and recoveries. It was also within 1987, when the Denison Mines, Limited had made an acquisition to purchase the mining leases of Canuc Resource Incorporated. Most of this purchase had included a group of claims on the southern boundary of the Denison Uranium Mine. This newly acquired land had provided immediate development to access the Canuc Resource Uranium Deposit. In regards to the Yttrium Recovery Plant, the Denison Mines, Limited had also went under joint venture agreements. Most of these historical joint venture agreements were made between the Shin-Etsu Chemical Company, Molycorp Incorporated, and Mitsui Company. From all production of this 150 ton mill it was reported that all yttrium was purchase by the Japanese for manufacturing components. Recent studies on yttrium had concluded that this resource can be used within high temperature superconductors. Most of these conductors were strongly reported to have employed yttrium ceramic compounds which was a significant interest.
1988 – Denison Mines, Limited
By 1988, the Denison Mines, Limited had continued onward with it bacterial leaching process, and conventional mining, and milling methods. For the most part, it was within 1987, when Denison Mines, Limited had made a full acquisition of the Canuc Resources, Limited. It was stated that the property had additionally connect to the Denison Mine on the southern boundary. With this undertaken it became reported that exploration heading were completed from the underground level of the Denison Mine into the Canuc Property. This had also resulted in recently constructed conveyor belt that would proved the transportation of the ore In the new mining area. From this acquisition, it was stated that Canuc Resource Limited would be entitled to a $1.02 per pound of uranium oxide contained in broken ore.
1989 - Denison Mines, Limited
During 1989, Denison Mines, Ltd., had largly reported that every pound of uranium produced was sold on a long term contract that were issued by major untilities for the generation of electricity. These had included agreements with the Tokyo Electric Power Company, inc., who had called for deriveries up to 1997, which included price nagotiations at regular intervals. It was also at this time that the contract with Ontario Hydro, had been scheduled to expire by the year of 1912, with prices currently based on production costs plus a margin. Denison's mining interest was wholly contributed towards uranium mining operations that were in production near the city of Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada. This resulted in producing an estimated 4,486,000 lbs. of uranium oxide from 2,721.000 tons of ore which was milled, which had been compared to 5,040,000 pounds from 2,835,000 tonnes of ore produced. Cause which were contributed to the decline of uranium oxide was wholly related to mechanical problems, and the reduced ore grades contributed to the decline. Contributions were also made towards the efficentcy of the underground ore handling system which was greatly improved in 1989, with the successfull commision of the Southwest Conveyor, that had given access to the Denison Reserves in the western part of the ore-body, and the Canuc Reserves to the south. Other adaptions had followed when a innovative system of multipass mining in production stopes was aimed at improving the grades that became developed and had now adapted to a standard mining method used by Denison. Bacterial leaching at this time had also play a major role towards increasing the production within the operation, was the amount of ore broken for leaching rising to 982,000 tons in 1989 from 575,000 tons in 1988. Other problems were shortly face within the suface facilities as the main pinion gear in the semi-autogenous grinding mill had caused production delays, particularly in the first half of the year. These problems were resolved quickely as spare were kept in order to minimize the down-time within the mining operations and to meet the required production capacity to operate. From all production it was reported that a total of 71% uranium oxide was sold to the Tokyo Electric Power Company, Inc. and 29% to Ontario Hydro on the basis of long-term contracts.
1990 - Denison Mines, Limited
In 1990, the Denison Mine had underwent a significant downfall when there was a total of 1,075 employees employed. From this down fall, it was stated that the total recovery of uranium oxide was reduced from 5 million to 2.5 million pounds of Uranium Oxide per year. Even the tonnage which was milled became reduced to 7,500 tonnes from 12,000 tonnes per day. From all production, the on-site mill at the Denison Mine had produce a total of 3,600,000 lbs. of uranium oxide within the operating year of 1990. Production from the Yttrium Recovery plant had amounted to 40,055 kg of Yttrium oxide as a by product from the uranium production. Most of this was caused due to the increased yttrium production from mainland china, which was the main reason of temporary suspension at the Yttrium Plant on July, 1990. Further decisions were being aimed at restarting the Yttrium Circuit within the hydro-metallurgical plant in the spring of 1991. Some more issues had occurred when Hydro One, and Denison Mines, Limited were renegotiating contracts for delivery as uranium oxide was far cheaper in the west. These negotiations with the two companies were scheduled to be completed within the operating year of 1991.
1991 - Denison Mines, Limited
A significant down fall had occurred during the operating period of 1991, and had place a dramatic down fall on the Denison Mine. Decisions which were unable to resolve had significantly place the company in jeopardy of closing the Denison Mine down for good. Most of this significant downfall had occurred due to the supply of uranium at lower cost request then that made in the 1977 contract. As decisions could not be made the Denison Mines, Limited. Had announce the closure of the Denison Uranium Mine on April, 30th, 1992. From this closure, it would result in a significant job loss of about 1,050 jobs within the town of Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada. In history, the Denison Mine was able to produce a total of 2,239,449.6 pounds of uranium oxide from January 1st, 1991, to December, 30, 1991. All production had come from a total tonnage of 1,166,380 tonnes containing a grade of 1.92 lbs of uranium oxide per ton. The last phase of the contract had called for the production of 2,750,000 pounds of uranium oxide to be delivered by May, 1st, 1992. Prior to this, the company had made a special production insensitive plan in its place which will allow an earlier close of the mine prior to May, 1st, 1992. Production from 1957, to the projected closure of the mine had amounted to 147,300,000 lbs of uranium oxide from 69.5 million tonnes with an average grade of 2.25 lbs. per ton. From all development that was done on the Denison Mine, the company had evaluated that the mine it self has 1,090 miles of total underground tunneling. Most of these tunnels at the time had been designed to measure 10 by 14 feet to allow efficient mining, and production performance.
1992 - Denison Mines, Limited
Underground mining operations at the Denison Uranium Mine had officially ceased on March, 11,1992. It was by June, 30th, 1992, when the final deliveries of uranium oxide were completed, and 850 workers were lad off. Since the start of production in 1957, the company had employed a total of 100,000 workers to its uranium mine project. For the most part, this mine was considered as the largest single mining operations that was in continuous production since 1957. Throughout its 35-year legacy the Denison Mine was strongly known for producing 69.4 million tonnes of ore at an average grade of 2.24 lbs. per ton. From this tonnage, a total of 147.35 million pounds of uranium oxide was produce. Prior to this, Denison had also produce a Yttrium oxide concentrate containing 35% Yttrium, until mid 1990.
Milling from the 1980’s had capacity of 15,000 tonnes per day within the time of treating all the ore. During the last three months of operation from January to March, 1992 production average 7,040 tonnes per from 258,498 tons milled. Milling before the closure had occurred was producing an average grade of 2.09 lbs. of uranium oxide per ton. Grading that was concluded had also included uranium oxide produce from mine water, and heap leaching practices. This had also included recycled waste material from Cameco Corporation, which produce 758,215 pounds of uranium oxide. Production figures for 1992, had included 29,627 pounds of uranium oxide from water, and 129,984 pounds from leaching operations.