Right now, many of the planet's gold miners are eking out in survival mode, breaking even if they're lucky, or losing money on every ounce they produce. It's become unsustainable.
Meanwhile, globally, there are thousands of gold mines holding tens of millions of ounces left underground. Essentially, those mines and the gold stuck inside are worthless – unless someone devises a new way to extract the "leftovers" in a safe and cost-effective way.
Well, there's a small Canadian company with the technology to do precisely that. This equipment will turn the mining world on its ear in a way not seen since the shovel was invented.
The company's "thermal fragmentation" approach will be as disruptive to mining as fracking has been to oil and gas… except that it's highly environmentally friendly.
That's welcome news, but the best part is that investors can buy shares of this company and its revolutionary technology for a song right now.
Here's how that firm is going to cut mining costs by at least 50% and send production soaring worldwide, no matter what happens to gold prices…
This Breakthrough Has Been a Long Time Coming
Gold mining has been around in one way or another for at least 7,000 years. Over that time, it has naturally managed to evolve and modernize – to a point.
Yet despite technological advances improving nearly all industries in the last few decades, gold mining has remained rather stagnant, boasting only small incremental improvements.
Mining gold is a tough business, too. It often takes decades to discover an economical deposit, then define, permit, build, and finally start pulling metal out of the ground. All the while, the business is subject to often large fluctuations in the price of its end product, gold.
Ultimately, achieving production involves massive upfront capital expenditures and high fixed production costs. Thanks to slumping prices, the gold mining industry is about where the U.S. oil and gas industry found itself before fracking was adopted across the sector in North America.
And as we've seen in the last four years, the price of gold can fall dramatically, then stay low for an extended period.
South Africa knows this all too well. For many years until 2006, South Africa was the world's top gold producer; it's where nearly a third of all the gold ever mined in history has come from.
But today it draws a humble seventh place. The South African gold mining industry is in tatters, and output is a shadow of its former levels. In fact, of its 6,000 gold mines, only a tiny fraction are still in operation.
Clearly, gold mining is more than ready for a breakthrough. Here's what's going to save the day.
Enter the Dragon Extractor
Patented in 10 countries, this equipment allows miners to accurately target and extract narrow veins of gold or other metals.
Here's how it works.
First, a pilot hole is drilled into the gold-bearing rock. Then a thermal head is inserted and ignited, generating just sufficient heat while injecting air into the hole. That's when the fragmenting begins.
The heat cushion causes the rock walls of the hole to begin to "spall" and fall away in very small fragments of 0 mm to 13 mm. This procedure continues expanding the size of the hole until the desired dimension is reached.
It's so fast and powerful that a 1.2 m² hole is created and extracted in less than 10 minutes.
At that point, a new pilot hole can be drilled further along the gold vein and the process repeated, with resulting ore fragments containing the valuable gold.
About the Author
Peter Krauth is the Resource Specialist for Money Map Press and has contributed some of the most popular and highly regarded investing articles on Money Morning. Peter is headquartered in resource-rich Canada, but he travels around the world to dig up the very best profit opportunity, whether it's in gold, silver, oil, coal, or even potash.