Identifies Neodynium As Main REE Element
Australian Bauxite Limited (ASX:ABX) has obtained promising rare earth element (REE) results from exploration at the DL130 bauxite-REE project in northern Tasmania.
The new samples have significantly increased the areal extent of REE enrichment at DL130 by identifying new enrichment zones trending to the northeast, northwest and to the south
• The main REE element at DL130 is Neodymium which is the main component of super-magnets used in electric vehicles, wind turbines, smart phones and military electronics
• Samples in hole DL162 are relatively enriched in the most highly valuable Terbium and Dysprosium REE and expands the prospectivity significantly to the north-west.
Terbium and Dysprosium increasing to the North-West
Exploration Manager, Paul Glover, said Hole DL162 is the most north-western hole in the mineralised zone and it has higher levels of high-priced super-magnet Rare Earth Elements, terbium and dysprosium.
Hole DL162 in the northwest is the highest grade and thickest intercept to date and has expanded the Target 1 substantially in a north-western direction.
The previous highest grade hole DL313 is in the northeast of the mineralised zone which remains a major Target 1 for expansion of the mineralisation at this Prospect. Both holes DL162 and DL313 appear to have finished still in the REE mineralisation.
“This discovery is starting to take shape but we are still at an early discovery stage,’’ Mr Glover said.
“The latest set of results confirmed that this prospect is open in several directions and also showed that some early drill holes did not test the REE enriched horizon and need to be redrilled carefully to evaluate the clay-rich zones that are sitting on the basement bedrock.
“The prospect is now recognised to be untested to the south and this potential will be drilled in due course. Most importantly, the latest results also showed that the mineralised zone is increasing in grade and thickness to the northwest where there is a large tract of untested ground that has the right geology to be prospective.
“This has been exciting new information. The previously recognised trend of increasing grades to the northeast also remains an important direction for expansion of exploration.
“ABx is assessing the value of a geophysical program to map the subsurface channels that may be carrying high grade rare earth elements. There is also potential for the REE-rich clay horizon to outcrop on slopes around the edge of this plateau and this could be revealed by a shallow geophysical survey.
“Because the REE occurs in clays and are soluble, the mineralisation appears likely to be Ionic Adsorption Clay deposits (“IAC”) which have been a major source of low-cost REE production in southern China. We are designing a bulk sampling program to allow metallurgical tests to confirm the deposit type and to design the best way to produce a bulk REE concentrate from this mineralisation.”
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