Northern Minerals makes new rare earths discovery
ASX listed heavy rare earths producer Northern Minerals, has proven not to be a one trick pony with a new rare earths discovery in the vicinity of, but not immediately adjacent to its world class Browns Range rare earths mine in W.A.
The new high grade, impressive looking discovery is 15km south of Browns Range in the Kimberley region of Western Australia
New assay results from RC drilling at the Dazzler and Iceman prospects turned up exceptional grades and thicknesses of rare earth mineralisation, including highly elevated contents of the sought-after rare earth element, dysprosium.
At Dazzler, intersections include 18 metres grading 9.1% total rare earth oxide from only 25m down-hole that incorporate a significant 0.86% dysprosium oxide.
Another hole returned 21m @ 2.15% TREO from 24m down-hole and also included 0.2% dysprosium oxide content.
At Iceman, shallow drilling produced an 11m intercept grading 4.83% TREO from 13m down-hole that included a very respectable 0.45% dysprosium oxide.
Iceman is located 400m along strike to the southeast of Dazzler.
Both prospects were initially identified by strong geochemical soil anomalies nearby and although Dazzler was located by limited scout drilling back in 2013, Iceman is a virgin discovery for Northern Minerals.
The company says these grades are notable given the Browns Range mineral resource estimate of nearly 9 million tonnes has an average TREO grade of 0.63%, containing just over 0.05% dysprosium oxide.
Northern Minerals Managing Director and CEO George Bauk said: “These very high-grade assays confirm our belief of having two new discoveries located close to the Browns Range processing infrastructure.”
“We will … follow up on these results as well as other high-priority areas targeting the Gardiner Sandstone unconformity.”
The company plans to follow up the encouraging results with more drilling later this year.
At Browns Range, Northern Minerals is now producing rare earth carbonate product from its fully operational and commissioned pilot-scale processing plant on site.
The project area is located about 160km southeast of Halls Creek in the Kimberley region of W.A.
The mineral product is rich in the element dysprosium, which is an essential ingredient in the production of high specification magnets used in clean energy and high technology applications.
The company is now the first significant world producer of dysprosium outside of China.
The new discoveries at Dazzler and Iceman outline just how prospective this area of W.A. is for rare earths.
This largely unexplored and geologically neglected corner of Australia is quickly firming up as the only region outside of China that is capable of going toe to toe with the Chinese in the global supply of heavy rare earths.