Developed by Australia's national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) over 15 years and now being sold by Adelaide-based Chrysos, the organisations say photon gold analyses is a faster, safer and more environmentally friendly alternative to the conventional fire assays.
"Fully automated, it dramatically reduces the turnaround time on assays from days to minutes, providing critical data to miners on gold grades in near real-time to support operational decisions," Chrysos said.
After recognising the technology's potential, CSIRO research program director Nick Cutmore said the research organisation partnered with investors to create new Australian company Chrysos Corporation in late 2016 to bring it to market.
First to adopt the new technology was international mining services company Ausdrill. The first photon assay system is now operational at Ausdrill's MinAnalytical facility in Perth, with two more systems to be established in the Kalgoorlie goldfields in the coming months. Ausdrill has longer term plans to take the innovation to Africa.
Chrysos CEO Dirk Treasure said that the company had a rapid growth plan and were well placed to disrupt the global gold analysis services market, offering near-real time, accurate analysis for the first time.
"With the first system now up and running at Ausdrill, we have successfully progressed the photon assay technology from concept through to a deployed product in just 16 months," Treasure said.
"Our lease model has been well received by the industry, with photon assay technology benefits being delivered without any increase in operating or capital costs."
The photon assay system will analyse at least 50,000 gold samples a month, at a similar cost to conventional methods. It can be applied to a range of other minerals, including silver and copper.
Overnight, the gold price was fixed at $1302.67
The WTI crude oil price was slightly down overnight at $70.70 per barrel.
In softer commodities, cocoa decreased $15 per tonne or 0.57% to $2603/t yesterday from the $2618 in the previous trading session, tradingeconomics.com reported. Historically, cocoa reached an all-time high of $4361.58/t in July of 1977 and a record low of $211/t in July of 1965.
Coffee increased 1.20c per pound or 1.01% to 120.55c/lb yesterday from 119.35c/lb in the previous trading session, tradingeconomics.com reported. Historically, coffee reached an all-time high of 339.86c/lb in April of 1977 and a record low of 42.50c/lb in October of 2001.