Glenn - thank you for this excellent recap & comments.
Regarding the high-purity silica: I think it definitely has to be considered because it is for real for the HPA Plant (pinch me) and will bring significant additional revenues. Company clearly stated they will produce HP-silica at their HPA Plant. At 60% of the total possible treated silica, it can at least match (double) the revenues from HP-alumina of the HPA Plant.
This is also very conservatively true for SGA Plant (using 3N) - expect significant NPV increase in the BFS...
For the HPA Plant: this is not considering the (likely) 100% scenario (upside potential), or the possibility of processing addtional silica from external sources (on top of what is being processed for HP-alumina production).
Hi Glenn, Thank you for your very relevant questio
Thank-you very much Alumina for your very thorough and insightful reply, and thank-you to others who added additional commentary. A few follow-up comments:
1- HPA Pricing
I'll keep in mind the $70,000 to $80,000 basket price for HPA that gegetrane/yourself have suggested. 6N is a real wild card, and any 6N demand that Orbite can satisfy at prices that you provide (> $300,000) would obviously materially improve Orbite's annual revenue #'s in 2013 and beyond from the HPA plant.
Thanks for highlighting the statement in Orbite's latest press release that "Initial Commercial production of 4N to 6N high purity alumina is expected to begin in Q1 2013". My headspace was still in the September 2012 press release where Orbite said they were still working on developing 6N purity, but hoped to have successfully done this by the time the HPA plant was in commercial service. Hopefully a news release we can expect sooner rather than later.
If the demand is there for Orbite to produce 10%+ of their HPA at 6N levels, that would be amazing. Similarly with 30% at 5N.
B - 2013 HPA Production volumes
Thanks for your comments here too. I think I'll go with gegetrane's estimate of November 2013 for initial prodution of 5 tpd, just to be conservative. But the really interesting numbers to me are the 2014 revenue numbers, where we have a full run rate of 5 tpd.
C - HP Silica
I guess we'll find out soon enough the contribution of high purity silica to HPA and SGA revenues. Obviously, the numbers you suggest are EXTREMELY material. I really appreciate you taking a stab at the numbers. For me, I think I'll leave the numbers out of my estimates for now, but consider them as material upside potential.
D - Rare Earth Ore processing
I'm going to be a bit speculative, and put a figure of $20 million for processing of 3rd-party rare earth ore. As with many other aspects of future HPA revenue, this is difficult to quantify at this time as Orbite has not publically released any specifics.
E - HPA Plant Revenues
So your revised figures are approx $100 million for HPA revenue in 2013, and approx $140 million in 2014 from the initial HPA plant. Then also material upside from HP-silica production and 3rd-party rare ore processing.
Thanks again Alumina1. It really helps to walk through the numbers, and understand your assumptions.