Nautilus to test seafloor production tools in PNG submerged trials

Henry Lazenby | M
ining Weekly | 4 April 2017 

Marine mining hopeful Nautilus Minerals will shortly start submerged testing of its fleet of seafloor production tools, following the equipment’s arrival in Papua New Guinea (PNG).

“We are delighted to be undertaking submerged trials in PNG. The trials will result in money and investment going into the PNG economy, and the employment of Papua New Guineans in ‘state of the art’ technology, which are some of the key benefits of seafloor production. The trials also allow us to work closely with our partner Petromin, government officers from the various government agencies, as well as representatives from Provincial Governments of New Ireland and East New Britain,” CEO Mike Johnston stated Monday.

The submerged trials will happen in an existing facility on Motukea Island, near Port Moresby in PNG.

The company last month stated that it remains on track to achieve production from the Solwara 1 project, offshore PNG in the Bismark Sea, in the first quarter of 2019. The company’s objective is to develop the world’s first commercial high-grade seafloor copper/gold mine and launch the seafloor resource production industry.

Nautilus formed a joint venture company with PNG’s nominee, Eda Kopa (Solwara), in December 2014 to mine high-grade polymetallic seafloor massive sulphide deposits. Nautilus has an 85% shareholding and Eda Kopa 15%.

Nautilus announced in September a revised work programme, pending the company successfully raising the required capital by June. It entails a more staged approach, moving the Nautilus equipment integration phase of vessel construction out until after the vessel has been delivered by Fujian Mawei Shipyard and Marine Assets Corporate in the fourth quarter of 2018, resulting in a 12-month delay to the original schedule. 


1 Comment

Filed under Mine construction, Papua New Guinea

One response to “Nautilus to test seafloor production tools in PNG submerged trials

  1. Catholic News NZ and the Pacific, 3 April, 2017

    Seabed mining – Negatives outweigh positives says Caritas PNG forum

    The Caritas group called on the government to immediately ban experimental seabed mining because:

    Nautilus Minerals Ltd has not demonstrated that seafloor resource development is commercially viable and environmentally sustainable
    The already commissioned Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Report is not available to the stakeholders concerned.
    Nautilus Minerals Ltd has not provided evidences of successful projects
    The local communities have not consented to the project going ahead
    The many unknowns make it a high risk project
    The Annual Caritas PNG Forum 2017 took place in Madang at the end of February.

    See full article at

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