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News Article | May 15, 2017
Site: www.prnewswire.com

Today's report shows that overall platinum supply is projected to fall by 2% year-on-year to 7,330 koz in 2017, with both primary and secondary supply expected to decline. Recycling is projected to fall by 6% year-on-year to 1,760 koz in 2017. Secondary supply from jewellery recycling is projected to decline by 20% year-on-year with recycling trends normalising following unusually large stock flows in China last year. Automotive demand for 2016 and 2017 is revised upward by 45 koz. The revisions reflect higher than expected global vehicle sales with increased loadings, while greater scrutiny of emissions is also believed to be limiting moves to thrift platinum loadings. Global platinum ETF holdings grew by 65 koz in the first quarter, with increases observed across most regions. ETF assets in the quarter were at their highest level since the fourth quarter of 2015. Bar and coin demand during the first three months of 2017 was supported by the minting of 20,000 one-ounce US American Eagle bullion coins in January, all of which were sold in just three days. Overall platinum investment demand is now projected to be 250 koz this year. Global platinum jewellery demand for the quarter increased 3% year-on-year, buoyed by increased Chinese retail sales during the quarter. However, global jewellery demand for 2017 is forecast to slip 1% from 2016, with anticipated declines in China and Japan outweighing gains in India and other regions. The platinum market is expected to be broadly balanced over the year, with a deficit of 65 koz in 2017 predicted. Above Ground Stocks are expected to end the year at 1,885 koz, a 3% fall on 2016, but more than 54% down from 2012. Paul Wilson, chief executive officer of WPIC commented: "This quarter's report reinforces our long held view that supply will become increasingly constrained in 2017, while revisions to the data show that 2016 was more heavily in deficit than previously detailed. Today's analysis once again shows how robust demand for platinum from the automotive sector continues to confound many negative expectations in the market. We believe that the upward revisions of automotive platinum demand in 2016 and 2017, contained in the report, indicate that automakers are increasing platinum loadings on vehicles in the face of increased scrutiny of emissions levels. The launch of the recent C40 independent road-testing initiative, led by the Mayors of London and Paris, sent the strongest of messages to carmakers that they need to act quickly to clean up the most polluting elements of their fleets or face the consequences. We believe that platinum will be an integral part of the solution that the carmakers turn to in 2017 and beyond." To download this edition of Platinum Quarterly and/or subscribe to receive the research in the future, without charge, please visit our website: http://www.platinuminvestment.com Platinum Quarterly is the first independent, freely-available, quarterly analysis of the global platinum market. Platinum Quarterly is a World Platinum Investment Council publication. It is largely based upon research and detailed analysis commissioned with, and conducted by, SFA Oxford (SFA), an independent authority on the platinum group metals market. The World Platinum Investment Council Ltd. (WPIC) is a global market authority on physical platinum investment, formed to meet the growing investor demand for objective and reliable platinum market intelligence. WPIC's mission is to stimulate global investor demand for physical platinum through both actionable insights and targeted product development. WPIC was created in 2014 by the six leading platinum producers in South Africa: Anglo American Platinum Ltd, Aquarius Platinum Ltd, Impala Platinum Ltd, Lonmin plc, Northam Platinum Ltd and Royal Bafokeng Platinum Ltd. For further information, please visit http://www.platinuminvestment.com. Founded in 2001, SFA (Oxford) is regarded as one of the most important independent authorities on the platinum group metals market. The company's in-depth market research and integrity is underpinned by extensive consulting from mine to market to recycler, as well as an unrivalled global industry network. SFA have a team of nine dedicated PGM analysts with wide and varied industry expertise and knowledge, each one specialising in a core area of the value chain, as well as many internationally-based associates. SFA is able to provide its clients with answers to the most difficult questions affecting the future of the industry. For more information go to: http://www.sfa-oxford.com Platinum is one of the rarest metals in the world with distinctive qualities making it highly valued across a number of diverse demand segments. Platinum's unique physical and catalytic properties have established its value in industrial applications. At the same time, its unique precious metal attributes have made it the premier jewellery metal. Platinum's supply comes from two main sources: primary mining output, and recycling, which typically comes from end of life auto catalysts and jewellery recycling. Over the last five years, between 72% and 78% of total annual platinum supply (in refined ounces) has come from primary mining output. Global demand for platinum is strong and becoming more diverse. There are four core segments of platinum demand: automotive, industrial, jewellery and investment demand. Platinum demand from autocatalysts has equated to between 37% and 41% of total demand in the last five years. Platinum's diverse other industrial uses account on average for 20% of total global demand (five year average). Over the same period, global annual jewellery demand has averaged 35% of total platinum demand. Investment is the smallest category of platinum demand and also the most variable over the past five years, ranging between 2% and 11% of total demand (excluding movements in vaulted investor holdings).

News Article | May 25, 2017
Site: www.marketwired.com

HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwired - May 25, 2017) - Ucore Rare Metals Inc. (TSX VENTURE:UCU)(OTCQX:UURAF) ("Ucore" or the "Company") is pleased to comment on recent initiatives by the US government to assist in the development of strategic metals mining and separation in the United States. The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2017 (the "Act") which has been signed into law this month, includes a significant authorization of funds for the processing and acquisition of strategic metals from tailings on US soil, and directly addresses the Bokan project in Southeast Alaska. The Act authorizes budget expenditures for F2017, including USD$5.5 million for the remediation of historic uranium mine waste from the Bokan Mountain site in Alaska, in addition to an allocation of USD$15 million for the extraction of rare earth elements (REE) and minerals from strategic coal tailings sites in the Eastern US. "The US government's dedication of over 20 million dollars in F2017 to projects which are directly aligned with Ucore's Strategic Metals Complex (SMC) facilities and our strategy of tailings processing/monetization, is well timed," said Jim McKenzie, President & CEO of Ucore. "We're pleased that Sen. Joe Manchin, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, and their colleagues have ensured that the development of US based REE resources and the remediation and economic development of resource-rich tailings sites using clean extraction technologies, are high priorities for the U.S. government. Ucore, with its partner IBC Advanced Technologies Inc, is pursuing the application of the SuperLig® metals separation and tailings processing platform in both instances." "In cooperation with Ucore, we now have a suite of REE separation ligands ready for deployment, as well as uranium and thorium ligands which have seen extensive historical testing and use," said Steve Izatt, President of IBC. "Our MRT platform, a US based technology addressing US strategic metals opportunities, is well suited to address domestic tailings operations." The Act approvingly notes the National Forest Service's dedication of $5.5 million in funding for the remediation of historic uranium mining at the Ross-Adams mine site at Bokan Mountain, Alaska. The Ross-Adams mine, which produced high grade uranium ore during the cold war era, remains open at depth, and is 100% controlled by Ucore's Landmark Alaska operating unit. The Bokan project also houses Ucore's Dotson-Ridge REE deposit, the site of an NI 43-101 compliant HREO resource, which is a distinct and spatially removed deposit from the Ross Adams underground mine. (http://ucore.com/projects/bokan-mountain-alaska/43-101) Ucore welcomes the improvements made to the Bokan Mountain site, an important asset which also houses Ucore's Bokan Dotson-Ridge rare earth resource. The Act additionally provides $15 million to the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) for the development and testing of commercially viable separation technologies which can be utilized in the near future to extract REE from the byproducts of coal mining. Ucore has engaged NETL for the prospective application of the SuperLig® REE platform in the coal tailings sector, a resource-rich US asset in West Virginia and other areas of the Northern Appalachians. The ability to acquire and separate REE from above-ground resources at a commercially viable level would be a significant achievement in developing successful alternative supply sources in a Chinese-dominated market. Ucore Rare Metals is a development-phase company focused on rare metals resources, extraction and beneficiation technologies with near term potential for production, growth and scalability. On March 3, 2015, Ucore announced the development of a joint venture with IBC for the deployment of SuperLig® technology for rare earths and multi-metallic tailings processing applications in North America and associated world markets. The Company has a 100% ownership stake in the Bokan project. On March 31, 2014, Ucore announced the unanimous support of the Alaska State Legislature for the investment of up to USD $145 Million in the Bokan project at the discretion of the Alaska Import Development and Export Agency ("AIDEA"). IBC Advanced Technologies, Inc. is an award-winning, green chemical selective separations company based on innovative MRT products. Headquartered in American Fork, Utah, with manufacturing facilities in Utah and Houston, Texas, IBC has supplied industrial, governmental and academic customers worldwide with environmentally friendly products, processes and services for over 27 years. IBC specializes in MRT, utilizing green chemistry to achieve highly selective separations of metal ions in complex matrices. Based on Nobel Prize-winning technology (1987), IBC's proprietary products and processes are used worldwide by premier metals refining and mining companies such as Tanaka Kikinzoku K.K. (Japan), Asarco Grupo Mexico (USA), Impala Platinum Ltd. (South Africa), and Sino Platinum (China). The Japanese Government (Mitsubishi Research, Inc.) recently awarded to IBC a highly competitive subsidy grant, "Demonstration Project for Seawater Purification Technologies", concerning the selective separation of the radionuclides strontium and cesium from contaminated seawater at Fukushima, Japan. IBC's expertise is illustrated by its extensive development and commercialization of separations systems for platinum group metals ("PGM's") at a world level. PGM's are analogous to the rare earth elements, in that they are considered difficult to selectively separate due to their constituent chemical similarities. The Ucore-IBC alliance builds on IBC's proven capabilities to develop, scale-up and commercialize selective separations systems for a number of diverse and complex applications. See www.ibcmrt.com for additional information. This press release includes certain statements that may be deemed "forward-looking statements". All statements in this release, other than statements of historical facts, that address future exploration drilling, exploration activities, research and development timelines, and events or developments that the Company expects, are forward looking statements. Although the Company believes the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially from those in forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include exploitation and exploration successes or setbacks, research and develop successes or setbacks, continued availability of financing, and general economic, market or business conditions. Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined by the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. Ucore Rare Metals Inc. is a development-phase mining company focused on establishing rare metal resources and beneficiation technologies with near term potential for production, growth and scalability. With multiple projects across North America, Ucore's primary focus is the 100% owned Bokan-Dotson Ridge REE property in Alaska.

News Article | May 25, 2017
Site: www.engineeringnews.co.za

JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Platinum mining company Impala Platinum (Implats) on Thursday launched dual convertible bond offerings to enhance the company’s short-to-medium term liquidity and maintain its strong financial position. Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed Implats, headed by new CEO Nico Muller, is offering up to R2.6-billion worth of rand-denominated unsecured convertible bonds and up to $300-million US dollar-denominated unsecured convertible bonds, with the proceeds earmarked to refinance two convertible bonds that mature next year. The 2018 bonds, which both mature on February 21, are made up of an amount of R2.7-billion with a 5% coupon and $200-million with a 1% coupon, and Implats is inviting holders to sell these to them. The new rand denominated bonds will bear yearly 6%-to-6.75% interest rates and the new dollar convertible bonds yearly 2.875%-to-3.625% interest rates. These will be convertible into ordinary Implats shares or cash when they mature in 2022. PricewaterhouseCoopers has been appointed to consider the fairness of the invitation, which is expected to expire on May 31. The sole global coordinator is the London branch of Deutsche Bank, with bookrunners including Rand Merchant Bank, Morgan Stanley, Nedbank and Standard Bank. Following the announcement, the price of the company’s shares fell by 9.14% to R37.76 a share by 10:51.

Lototskyy M.V.,University of the Western Cape | Tolj I.,University of the Western Cape | Tolj I.,University of Split | Parsons A.,University of the Western Cape | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Power Sources | Year: 2016

We present test results of a commercial 3-tonne electric forklift (STILL) equipped with a commercial fuel cell power module (Plug Power) and a MH hydrogen storage tank (HySA Systems and TF Design). The tests included: (i) performance evaluation of "hybrid" hydrogen storage system during refuelling at low (<185 bar) dispensing pressures; (ii) comparison of the forklift performances during heavy-duty operation when changing the powering in the series: standard battery - fuel cell power module (alone) - power module with integrated MH tank; and (iii) performance tests of the forklift during its operation under working conditions. It was found that (a) the forklift with power module and MH tank can achieve 83% of maximum hydrogen storage capacity during 6 min refuelling (for full capacity 12-15 min); (b) heavy-duty operation of the forklift is characterised by 25% increase in energy consumption, and during system operation more uniform power distribution occurs when operating in the fuel cell powering mode with MH, in comparison to the battery powering mode; (c) use of the fully refuelled fuel cell power module with the MH extension tank allows for uninterrupted operation for 3 h 6 min and 7 h 15 min, for heavy- and light-duty operation, respectively. © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Lototskyy M.V.,University of the Western Cape | Davids M.W.,University of the Western Cape | Tolj I.,University of the Western Cape | Klochko Y.V.,University of the Western Cape | And 5 more authors.
International Journal of Hydrogen Energy | Year: 2015

Metal Hydrides (MH) provide efficient hydrogen storage for various applications, including Low Temperature PEM Fuel Cells (LT PEMFCs), when system weight is not a major and critical issue. Endothermic dehydrogenation of MH leading to decreased rates of H2 evolution eliminates the risk of accidents even in the case of rupture of the hydrogen storage containment. At the same time, it poses a number of challenges related to the constant, stable and sufficient H2 supply for stable FC operation.This paper reviews recent efforts in MH hydrogen storage and supply systems for LT PEMFC applications, including the ones developed at HySA Systems/SAIAMC/University of the Western Cape. The systems are characterised by a series of hydrogen storage capacities ranging from 10NL to ~10Nm3H2 in turns providing stable operation for stationary and mobile FC power modules (from a few W to several kW). The MH systems use unstable hydride materials (equilibrium H2 pressure at ambient temperature around 10bar) that, in combination with special engineering solutions of MH containers (both liquid- and air-heated-cooled), and optimised system layout, facilitates H2 supply to LT PEMFC stacks. © 2015 Hydrogen Energy Publications, LLC.

Ayres N.L.,Impala Platinum Ltd | Gardner L.J.,Impala Platinum Ltd
Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy | Year: 2014

Tendon support systems have been successfully used to stabilize excavations. Tendon support systems are routinely designed using the axial load-bearing capacity of tendons, namely the tensile strength. To attain tensile strength the tendon must be loaded along its length, which often does not occur in practice. Tendons should optimally be installed at 90° to the surface of the excavation to achieve maximum penetration depth, yet this is often not physically or practically possible, and installations at angles less than 90° occur. Furthermore, the intersection of geological features within the rock mass frequently results in complex loading situations on tendons. The position and angle at which loading occurs results in different combinations of tensile and shear forces acting on the tendon, which can impact on the support performance of each unit and ultimately the whole system. All factors that influence the support system should be understood and taken into account to ensure a sound support design. Combination loading situations are further investigated and tested to obtain a better understanding of the mechanisms involved and the effects on tendon load-bearing capacity. Tendon support units were tested at different installation angles to establish the tendon performance, mechanical behaviour, and load capacity during these loading situations. The results and outcomes are aimed at providing rock engineers with additional data and improved understanding of how tendons could perform under certain conditions. © The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, 2014.

Lototskyy M.,University of the Western Cape | Tolj I.,University of the Western Cape | Davids M.W.,University of the Western Cape | Bujlo P.,University of the Western Cape | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Alloys and Compounds | Year: 2015

Abstract This paper describes the layout and presents the results of the testing of a novel prototype "distributed hybrid" hydrogen storage and supply system that has the potential to be used for Low Temperature Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell (LT-PEMFC) applications. The system consists of individual Metal Hydride (MH) and Compressed Gas (CGH2) tanks with common gas manifold, and a thermal management system where heat exchanger of the liquid heated-cooled MH tank is integrated with the cooling system of the LT-PEMFC BoP. The MH tank is filled with a medium-stability AB2-type MH material (H2 equilibrium pressure of about 10 bar at room temperature). This innovative solution allows for (i) an increase in hydrogen storage capacity of the whole gas storage system and the reduction of H2 charge pressure; (ii) shorter charging times in the refuelling mode and smoother peaks of H2 consumption during its supply to the fuel cell stack; (iii) the use of standard parts with simple layout and lower costs; and (iv) adding flexibility in the layout and placement of the components of the hydrogen storage and supply system. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Bartlett H.E.,Hugh Bartlett Consulting | Liebenberg M.J.,Impala Platinum Ltd.
Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy | Year: 2014

This paper deals with the sampling and mass measurement for ore delivered from a shaft to a processing plant and the contribution of the data from these measurements to the metal balances from shaft deliveries to final metal production. Accurate measurement of the grade and tonnage of run-of-mine ore is important for four main reasons; It enables the measurement of the production from different profit centres to within statistically determined confidence limits for daily, monthly, or annual averages. The profit centres could be individual shafts within a mining complex or ore treated on a toll basis The monthly production at shaft head is compared to the grades and tonnage determined from underground sampling and mass measurement in terms of a shaft call factor The sum of the production from the shafts is the input to concentrators. This input is a major part of the total input into a complex with concentrators, smelters, and refineries. In terms of the Codes of Practice for Metal Accounting the inputs are compared to outputs and inventory changes to assess the efficiencies and unaccounted losses or gains at the various stages in the flow of metal from source to market On a daily or daily moving average basis, the grades and tons from shafts are monitored and compared against these quantities from underground measurements. This acts as a control on off-reef mining, dilution, and other factors underground. Accurate measurement of grade of ore at the shaft head has been a challenge because of the large particle size. The conventional wisdom has been that ore can be sampled accurately only after it has been milled to give a slurry that is sampled as feed to a flotation process. However, when the ore fed to a flotation plant comes from multiple sources each source has to be sampled separately. So, relying on the grades determined using the sampling of concentrator input with cross-stream slurry samplers is not an option for determining the grade from an individual shaft. Impala has developed a system for sampling and weighing run-of-mine ore from multiple shafts. The system involves sampling the inputs to the plants using cross-belt (hammer) samplers and weighing the deliveries using in-motion railway weighing systems. Many samples are taken. Individually they have a high variance but, as a consequence of the averaging effect of large numbers and as shown by statistical analysis, the mean results are fit for the purposes of daily grade control for shafts and for monthly accounting of production from individual shafts. In the metal accounting systems at Impala, the measurement of input, including ore and toll-treated material is compared to the output in the form of final metal and tailings losses, as well as any inventory change that takes place, in order to determine a final metal balance from mill feed to product. The calculated inventory is compared to that measured, and the difference, or unaccounted- for metal, is then reported as a percentage of input. The balances obtained over several years yields balances for platinum that are below 1% imbalanced. © The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, 2014. ISSN 2225-6253.

Gardner L.J.,Impala Platinum Ltd
Harmonising Rock Engineering and the Environment - Proceedings of the 12th ISRM International Congress on Rock Mechanics | Year: 2012

Tunneling in South African platinum mines has traditionally been conducted using hand-held drilling and blasting methods, with tunnels being supported using tendons installed on at regular intervals. Rocks can and do fall out between the individual tendons, often with fatal results. To reduce levels of rock-related risk in line with a "Zero Harm" policy, Impala Platinum has adopted a two-pronged strategy for mining project tunnels. This includes limiting the number of personnel in tunnels by the increased use of mechanization, while reducing their exposure to unsupported rock by using areal coverage with the tendon support. While presenting a minimum of technical detail, this paper attempts to explain how Impala has continually optimized its tunnel support system to reduce rock-related risk in a challenging environment. Although this story is by no means unique, it provides an example of how such changes should be ongoing, and the resulting improvements that can be brought about in both safety and productivity. © 2012 Taylor & Francis Group, London.

Fernandes N.D.,Impala Platinum Ltd | Gardner L.J.,Impala Platinum Ltd
Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy | Year: 2011

Labour-intensive narrow reef stoping, as traditionally practised in South African gold and platinum mines, is almost unique in the modern first-world mechanized mining environment. Shortcomings of the system include the ever increasing cost of labour, a cap on achievable productivity and a poor safety record, particularly in the field of rock-related accidents. In the absence of sustainable alternative technologies, the South African mining industry has spent millions of rands improving the present system, focusing on improving workplace safety. This paper details the changes to stope support at Impala Platinum's Rustenburg operations, and the impact on rock-related safety performance. © The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, 2010.

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