MARCH 30, 2018 — Toronto, Canada, headquartered seafloor mining pioneer Nautilus Minerals Inc. (TSX:NUS) reports that its production support vessel was launched yesterday Fujian Mawei Shipbuilding's Mawei shipyard in China.
The vessel will be used by Nautilus and its partner, Eda Kopa (Solwara) Limited to look for polymetallic seafloor massive sulfide deposits at the Solwara 1 Project site, in the Bismarck Sea of Papua New Guinea.
The vessel is now approximately 75% complete with final delivery from the shipbuilder currently scheduled for March 31, 2019.
Nautilus CEO Mike Johnston called the launch "a significant milestone for the company and the deep water seafloor mining industry."
"We believe that mining the seafloor for much needed minerals will be a more cost effective and environmentally friendly source of obtaining high grade copper, gold and silver," said Johnston. "Nautilus further differentiates itself from others by having a 'first-mover advantage' which is protected by intellectual property and 20 patents. Once our new vessel is delivered, and subject to final funding, mining operations at 1,600 m water depth is anticipated to commence in late 2019."
The Production Support Vessel (PSV), which Nautilus will lease from Marine Assets Corporation, provides a stable platform for operations using advanced dynamic positioning technologies to ensure it stays on location at Solwara 1 irrespective of wind and wave conditions. The vessel has been designed for use in offshore construction and seafloor mining industries.