Western Australia-based Peninsula Energy has said the first shipment of about 16,000 pounds U3O8 (6.2 tU) of drummed uranium was delivered to a North American conversion facility on 31 May from its Lance's Ross Permit Area in the US state of Wyoming. The company expects to make deliveries at regular intervals from the in-situ leach operation, it said. Operations began in December 2015 and Peninsula made its first delivery of uranium under its wholly-owned subsidiary Strata Energy Inc's 2011 sale and purchase agreement with an unnamed US utility in January. However, that delivery was made using borrowed material, to ensure compliance with the delivery schedule.
Production is now ramping up at Lance, with the fourth header house due to come online in early June. The fifth header house, of a total of seven, is expected to come online in the third quarter of 2016. All seven header houses should be commissioned by the end of the year although "meaningful amounts" of uranium are not likely to be extracted from the sixth and seventh header houses until early in 2017.
Peninsula is developing the Lance projects - the Ross, Kendrick and Barber permits - under a three-stage strategy to reduce the initial funding requirements while allowing the company to defer most of its planned uranium sales contracts. Current plans see Kendrick scheduled to come online in 2019. In February, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) accepted for review an application by Strata Energy to extend the licence of the Lance project by including the Kendrick expansion area into the Ross Permit Area. A target date of September 2017 is currently set for the issue of a licence amendment.