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Global Atomic powers up Dasa plan

Early engineering works have begun on a hybrid power plant for Global Atomic’s Dasa uranium project in the Republic of Niger which, along with brining solar to the region, is expected to reduce capital costs.
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Global Atomic's Stephen G Roman with uranium ore

It comes ahead of several key milestones for Dasa that are expected to be met in the coming months.

"We are excited to begin engineering works, with start-up generation scheduled in 2022 and the hybrid plant to be delivered in 2023," director of development Matthew Silvester from the selected power producer Enernet Global said.

Global Atomic says that once operating, the mine will require 12 megawatt of consistent power and Enernet's hybrid power plant is to deliver 16 MW solar, 15 MW battery energy storage, and a 16 MW back-up diesel generation plant.

It's to be integrated with grid power provided by the Niger state-owned Sonichar utility.

"The system will provide approximately 35% of power requirements from renewables, making Dasa one of the greenest operations in Africa, abating 27,000 tonnes of CO2e per annum," the company said.

Global Atomic chairman and CEO Stephan Roman said: "Enernet's approach will help reduce our up-front capital costs, support Niger by engaging its state-owned utility Sonichar as our primary energy source, introduce solar as a legacy to the region and utilize our own generators as a backup to ensure the health and safety of our workers and continuous operations".

Enernet offers an energy-as-a-service model which results in no capital outlay for customers.

Red Cloud Securities said it may also reduce downtime as the Dasa feasibility study suggested only 86% of plant availability given expected power disruptions unless back-up power was provided.

"We note that initial Dasa capital requirements are US$208 million, of which surface utilities and power lines total US$5.8 million," Red Cloud said.

The 2021 Dasa feasibility study viewed an initial phase 1 mine development over 12 years, producing 45.4 million pounds and an after-tax NPV8% of US$157 million and an IRR of 22.7%, using a uranium price of US$35/lb.

Global Atomic's share price reached a six-week high of C$3.32 (US$2.57) following the news of the early works on the hybrid power plant on July 21, before easing back to C$2.91 on July 24.

Red Cloud has a target price for the company's shares of C$7.20.

Red Cloud said ongoing drilling results and offtake discussions, an expected resources/ mine plan and project financing in Q4, and plant construction and commissioning in Q4 2022 are upcoming catalysts that could help drive the share price.

Global Atomic has a market capitalization of C$516.69 million.