Additional Drill Rig at Kachi Lithium Brine Project
- A third drill rig has started at Lake's 100%-owned Kachi Lithium Brine Project in Catamarca Province, Argentina.
- The additional diamond drill rig will assess the geology and stratigraphy while the other drill rigs are rotary rigs.
- Drilling was completed in the first rotary drill hole to a depth of 240 metres with encouraging indications of conductive brines in thick sandy aquifers. Testing and results will be reported in the coming weeks.
- Lake's Olaroz-Cauchari Project continues to look promising given the recent results from the adjoining leases showing high grade lithium with high flow rates. Lake has progressed with the process to have drilling approved adjacent to this area.
Kachi Lithium Brine Project, Catamarca - Update on drilling
Conductive brines were intersected in two thick sandy aquifers but these horizons have proven challenging to drill with rotary and diamond drill rigs. Testing and results will follow in the coming weeks.
Based on the solid progress being made at Kachi, a third rig - a diamond drill rig - has been deployed and commenced operations adjacent to the second rotary drill rig, 11 kilometres to the south east of the recently completed rotary drillhole to assess whether the same conductive sandy aquifers can be intersected. The diamond drilling company has an excellent track record of drilling brines under salt lakes in Argentina. The intention is to assess which of the three rigs produces the best results and the drilling programme will then be extended based on these outcomes.
Olaroz - Cauchari Lithium Brine Project, Jujuy - Update on nearby drilling results
Further high-grade lithium brine results averaging 476 mg/L lithium with other holes up to 720 mg/L lithium with high flow rates of brines were reported from the leases immediately adjoining Lake's leases at the Cauchari Lithium Brine Project in Jujuy province by Advantage Lithium and Orocobre (ASX:ORE) (OTCMKTS:OROCF).
Lake's subsidiaries have progressed with the process to have drilling approved adjacent to this area and it is Lake's intention to target the same aquifers.
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About Lake Resources NL
Lake Resources NL (ASX:LKE) is a lithium exploration and development company focused on developing its three lithium brine projects and hard rock project in Argentina, all owned 100%. The leases are in a prime location among the lithium sector's largest players within the Lithium Triangle, where half of the world's lithium is produced. Lake holds one of the largest lithium tenement packages in Argentina (~200,000Ha) secured in 2016 prior to a significant 'rush' by major companies. The large holdings provide the potential to provide consistent security of supply demanded by battery makers and electric vehicle manufacturers.
The Kachi project covers 69,000 ha over a salt lake south of FMC's lithium operation and near Albemarle's Antofalla project in Catamarca Province. Drilling at Kachi has confirmed a large lithium brine bearing basin over 20km long, 15km wide and 400m to 800m deep. Drilling over Kachi (currently 16 drill holes, 3100m) has produced a maiden indicated and inferred resource of 4.4 Mt LCE (Indicated 1.0Mt and Inferred 3.4Mt) within a 8-17 Mt LCE exploration target (refer ASX announcement 27 November 2018).
A direct extraction technique is being tested in partnership with Lilac Solutions, which has shown 80-90% recoveries and lithium brine concentrations in excess of 3000 mg/L lithium and is planned to be trialled on site in tandem with conventional methods as part of a PFS to follow the resource statement. Scope exists to unlock considerable value through partnerships and corporate deals in the near term.
The Olaroz-Cauchari and Paso brine projects are located adjacent to major world class brine projects either in production or being developed in the highly prospective Jujuy Province. The Olaroz-Cauchari project is located in the same basin as Orocobre's Olaroz lithium production and adjoins Ganfeng Lithium/Lithium Americas Cauchari project, with high grade lithium (600 mg/L) with high flow rates drilled immediately across the lease boundary.
Two drill rigs are currently drilling at Cauchari with results anticipated to extend the proven resources in adjoining properties into LKE's area with results anticipated from November into December 2018. This will be followed by drilling extensions to the Olaroz area in LKE's 100% owned Olaroz leases.
Significant corporate transactions continue in adjacent leases with development of Ganfeng Lithium/Lithium Americas Cauchari project with Ganfeng announcing a US$237 million for 37% of the Cauchari project previously held by SQM. Nearby projects of Lithium X were acquired via a takeover offer of C$265 million completed March 2018. The northern half of Galaxy's Sal de Vida resource was purchased for US$280 million by POSCO in June 2018. These transactions imply an acquisition cost of US$55-110 million per 1 million tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) in resources.
The demand for lithium continues to be strong for lithium ion batteries in electric vehicles, according to recent data from the leading independent battery minerals consultant, Benchmark Mineral Intelligence. Supply continues to be constrained suggesting good opportunities for upstream lithium companies.
Lake Resources NL