Neometals sign worldwide Titanium technology licence
Fresh from success with their Mt Marion Lithium play, Neometals have now turned their attention to the technology they plan to deploy at their goliath Barrambie Titanium Project in the north of W.A.
The key to commercializing Barrambie can be found in a proprietary technology licensed to Neometals on a non-exclusive basis for the project.
In addition to their current license to use the technology at Barrambie, Neometals have now signed a formal agreement with the owners of that technology to deploy it worldwide with the exception of China and Russia.
The technology is effectively a proprietary hydrometallurgical operation, a key feature of which is the patented acid recovery and regeneration process which the company says shows the potential to operate at significantly lower costs than established technologies.
Neometals says their proprietary process has the potential to bring the cost at Barrambie to produce a tonne of titanium dioxide down to around US$572 per tonne from a more traditional industry standard price of up to US$2300 per tonne.
Barrambie is the second highest grade Titanium led multi mineral project in the world and according to the company’s PFS will reap $2.4b in free cash over the initial 19.6 year mine life.
Neometals are planning to use the global technology license to develop a portfolio of royalty paying projects around the world with all royalty revenues to be split 25%/75% between Neometals and the owners of the technology respectively.
The technology was originally invented for refractory precious and base metal concentrates by Dr Bryn Harris, a former professor at McGill University Montreal, Canada and recipient of the Sherritt Award for Hydrometallurgy.
Neometals currently have an arrangement with the owners of the technology to deploy it at Barrambie in return for the payment of a 5% ongoing royalty from the project.
However the parties have now agreed that the technology will be deployed at Barrambie by the 25/75 JV rather than by the owners themselves effectively reducing the royalty payable at Barrambie from 5% down to 3.75%.
Neometals will pay an upfront payment of US$250 000 to the technology owners which will be recoverable from future royalty payments.
The company is in discussions with a global EPC engineering firm with a view to forming a strategic alliance agreement to provide a platform for the commercialisation of the technology at no up-front cost to Neometals.