Delecta to add US copper play to portfolio
ASX-listed Delecta Ltd has picked up a couple of exciting new multi-minerals plays in the USA. The company will acquire 100% of American Vanadium’s Copper Ridge project in Utah and three uranium-vanadium projects in Utah and Colorado.
Delecta’s new flagship Copper Ridge project in Utah is set to receive the company's immediate attention, with several walk-up drill targets ripe for the picking.
The Copper Ridge project comprises a total of approximately 33 square kilometers of mineral land claims that boast a number of impressive historical numbers.
Early-stage prior exploration across the three existing prospects at Copper Ridge, Harrison, Xaz and Mealy yielded some solid results.
Of the 224 historical rock chips taken, 89 samples contained visual copper with the best result peaking out at an impressive 17.01% copper.
Surprisingly, drilling has only reached an average of just 6m below surface across the three prospects.
The core drilling was carried out in 2014 and confirmed the presence of copper mineralisation, albeit at shallow depths with the best hole snagging 3.66m going 0.56% copper, 83.9g/t silver and elevated cobalt values up to 8290ppm.
Preliminary metallurgical work that was carried out on core samples from the Copper Ridge project have confirmed the copper solubility and recoveries averaged 83%.
Delecta will also gain control of American Vanadium’s uranium and vanadium ground known as the Vanadium King project in Utah and the Radium Mountain and Wedding Bell projects in Colorado. The projects are located in the Uravan Mineral Belt, which has a total reported production from 1947 to 1979 of 34,754,000kg of uranium oxide and 187,443,300kg of vanadium pentoxide.
Importantly, these three projects are all located within trucking distance of White Mesa Mill, the only operating uranium mill in the USA that has a large surplus production capacity.
Utah is the USA’s second-largest copper producing state with the majority of the red metal originating from Rio Tinto’s Bingham Canyon mine. Bingham produced over 19 million tonnes of copper between 1906 and 2013.
The large Lisbon Valley Mine lies 95km south-east of the Copper Ridge project and has a resource of approximately 115,000 tonnes of copper.
It has produced approximately 10 – 14 million kilograms per year of copper since 2005.
According to Delecta, the geology and mineralisation styles at Lisbon Valley are similar to the Copper Ridge project, which ticks off all the proverbial prospectivity boxes for the small capped ASX listed company.
Management is understandably confident in the exploration upside of the Copper Ridge project, with previous explorers only scratching the surface of this well-endowed copper province.
Copper itself is set to feel the supply squeeze with a staggering 200 copper mines expected to close across the globe by 2035 and copper demand effectively doubling every 20-30 years, according to MinEx Consulting, an economic advisor to the minerals industry.
Navigant Research said that a whopping 5.2 tonnes of copper is used in a single 3-megawatt wind turbine and 5.5 tonnes of copper per megawatt is used in solar power systems, adding some allure to its opportunity to ride the green wave that has presented itself in recent years.
One megawatt can power approximately 1000 homes which potentially adds up to a lot of copper, as more and more households embrace solar energy.
Delecta are set to run with a team of notable and technically proficient Board appointments at its helm, including Greg Smith who has over 40 years of mineral discovery and development experience.
The deal is conditional upon Delecta raising $2.5 million at 2 cents per share, which will see it cashed up and ready to unearth parts of this highly prospective mineral province that really should have been unearthed many years ago.
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