The book recounts the pre-Kambalda era for nickel, the great Kambalda discoveries and development and the first days of lateritic mining and processing at Greenvale in Queensland. Then there were the new mines of the nickel boom outside of Kambalda – at Scotia, Nepean and Carr Boyd to name a few, followed by the sulphide nickel and laterite nickel developments at or near Ravensthorpe.
Jubilee Mines helped liven the picture with its high grade Cosmos discovery in the late 1990s while Mining Project Investors found the spectacular high-grade Silver Swan deposit closer to Kalgoorlie.
When WMC fell out of love with Kambalda, this created a new era that allowed smaller fish (often using the expertise of Kambalda operators) to explore, to probe deeper and create a new life. This included Mincor Resources, Independence Group and Panoramic Resources.
Meanwhile, a new life was being created at Forrestania, when Western Areas NL took over the mothballed operations of the Outokumpu group and also made enviable discoveries including Spotted Quoll.
A modern nickel boom came with Sirius Resources made the big nickel-copper discovery in a remote region well east of Norseman that showed the earlier concepts of Canadian style nickel-copper deposits were a reality in the Fraser Range.
That company was then acquired by Independence Group, and the old team was given a life boat to explore its gold and other metal targets south of Kambalda and to start a quest in Scandinavia. Nova and its related deposits were being commissioned in 2017 and were seen by analysts through the nickel-copper association as able to withstand any new lows in the nickel price.
The book also covers some of the important past and current exploration programmes by others.