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New pegmatite discovery, anomalous lithium soils and pilot geophysics
Galan Lithium Limited (ASX: GLN) (Galan or the Company) is pleased to provide an update on its ongoing exploration activities at the Greenbushes South Lithium Project (a joint venture between Galan (80%) and Lithium Australia Limited (ASX: LIT) (20%)) (Greenbushes South).
- Discovery of new outcropping pegmatite with 500m+ strike length; remains open along strike with geological mapping ongoing
- New soil assays spatially associated with prior pegmatite discovery reveal up to 215 ppm Li; further soil and rock chip assay results pending
- UltraFine+ assay method also confirms presence of anomalous pathfinder element concentrations (As, Cs)
- Pilot ground geophysics program in process, consisting of passive seismic (HSVR), gravity and resistivity methods
- Processed HSVR and gravity data outcomes expected in next few weeks
Geological mapping continues within Exploration Licence E70/4790. Recent new field discoveries include a pegmatite in three main outcrops spanning an area approximately 500m x 400m (see Figure 1). There are also strong indications that this pegmatite remains open and continues along strike. This builds on the previous pegmatite discovery (200m x 40m) announced in June (see ASX release dated 15 June 2022, First Pegmatite Lens Discovered at Greenbushes South). Detailed mapping and geochemical sampling are ongoing.
Initial geochemical results; anomalous lithium concentrations up to 215 ppm
The Company has received the first batch (65 in total) of geochemical assays from the soil sampling grids traversing the initial pegmatite discovery. The results confirm anomalous concentrations of lithium up to 215 ppm (see Figure 2), as well as for pathfinder elements such as As and Cs (see Figures 3 and 4). A further 170 assays from this soil sampling program are pending, as well as the assays for 15 rock chip samples taken from the earlier mapped pegmatite outcrops (see Figure 2).
The returned soil results were assayed using the UltraFine+ assay technique that delivers high fidelity multi-element analysis derived from the ultrafine (< 2 μm) fraction of soil samples. The UltraFine+ method is an analytical process flow developed by CSIRO and LabWest which often returns stronger signals well above instrumental detection limits, usefully increasing signal-to-background ratios. Galan has now submitted all historical soil samples from Greenbushes South to be re-assayed utilising this method.
Ground geophysical initiatives; HSVR and gravity results pending
A pilot study utilising ground-based geophysical techniques to explore blind (buried) pegmatite targets has been completed in the Greenbushes South project areas. The survey consists of passive seismic (HSVR) and gravity surveys conducted by Atlas Geophysics. Data processing is underway and results are expected to be available in the coming weeks. Additionally, a resistivity study is also planned to be completed by GBG in the next few weeks to further aid in defining the orientation of pegmatite at depth.
Figure 1: Outcrops of quartz, feldspar, mica and tourmaline pegmatite dykes.
Galan Managing Director, JP Vargas de la Vega, commented:
“Initial exploration outcomes at Greenbushes South have been excellent. The team is understandably excited about the fact that airborne geophysical targeting has successfully driven our field mapping and sampling focus, and already led to multiple new sizeable pegmatite outcrops being discovered. It is also important to note that the discovered pegmatites have similar macroscopic mineralogy to those pegmatites described at the Greenbushes Lithium Mine to the north.
Today’s results take us a step further. We now have confirmation of anomalous lithium concentration levels in the soil samples that were taken over the initial pegmatite discovery at the GS11 target zone.
Geological mapping and geochemical sampling activities are ongoing. There are further soil and rock sample assays pending, including those to be submitted from our newest pegmatite discovery. We have also launched a pilot ground geophysics program to overlay our exploration targeting efforts at Greenbushes South. All of this work is driving us towards the key outcome of premium target locations for our initial drilling program.”
This article includes content from Galan Lithium Limited, licensed for the purpose of publishing on Investing News Australia. This article does not constitute financial product advice. It is your responsibility to perform proper due diligence before acting upon any information provided here. Please refer to our full disclaimer here.
Argentina is no stranger to lithium mining. The South American nation is one of three encompassed in the prolific Lithium Triangle, a region that holds more than half of the world’s lithium deposits. About 70 percent of global lithium reserves lie beneath Argentina’s salt flats concentrating lithium operations in the provinces of Jujuy, Salta and Catamarca.
Amidst electrification and decarbonisation, analysts are forecasting a global supply deficit of 89,000 tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) in 2023 and the Argentinian government aims to double down on lithium to meet the increasing demand. Argentina expects a US$4.2bn investment in its lithium sector and projects to produce about 50,000 tonnes of lithium in 2022.z
Galan Lithium Limited (ASX:GLN) is an Australian-based international mining development company focused on its high-quality lithium brine projects in the world-class Hombre Muerto region in Argentina and its highly prospective lithium JV project in Australia.
The company’s flagship Hombre Muerto West (HMW) project hosts some of Argentina’s highest grade and lowest impurity levels with an inventory of 2.3Mt LCE. The 100 percent owned property also leverages close proximity to Livent Corporation’s El Fenix operation and Galaxy Resources and POSCO’s Sal de Vida projects. Extensive groundwork has demonstrated the significant potential of a deep basin on the property, warranting exciting advanced exploration.
Galan’s secondary Candelas project comprises a sizable valley-filled channel with a potential indicated presence of substantially high volume brine characteristics. The project’s maiden resource estimates stand upwards of 685ktLCE according to surveying from October 2019 and demonstrate exceptional discovery opportunities across this unexplored asset.
In January 2021, Galan acquired 80 percent of the Greenbushes South lithium project from Lithium Australia NL. The project boasts advantageous positioning three kilometers south of the prolific Greenbushes lithium mine owned by Talison Lithium Pty Ltd., a notable lithium exploration company that operates one of the world’s largest, highest-grade, hard rock spodumene deposits. Galan’s joint venture project has the potential to see similar large-scale discoveries and high-grade lithium mineralisation across its Greenbushes South property.
Partial aerial view of HMW with drilling at Pata Pila in the lower part of the picture
Galan is on track to complete the HMW Definitive Feasibility Study by end of CY2022. The project’s Mineral Resource update is also on track for delivery in the third quarter of this year. Galan confirmed that the pilot plant construction is progressing well with the main pond completed with brine filling imminent and evaporation piloting to follow. An exploration diamond drill hole that’s underway at Pata Pila to generate key information on potential Mineral Resource extension beyond salar limits.
Galan completed its first exploration sampling and mapping work at the Greenbushes South Lithium project. Reports from the geochemical survey showed 425 soil samples and 14 rock chip samples taken at the northern edge of Galan’s E70/4790 tenement and at the mapped location of the Donnybrook-Bridgetown Shear Zone (DBSZ). The DBSZ a primarily associated with syntectonic emplacement of the lithium-bearing pegmatites of the Greenbushes mine to the north.
Galan Lithium Limited has a highly experienced management team with over a century of professional expertise in the resource, finance and energy sectors. This results-oriented board and their vested interest in company success prime Galan for exceptional discovery potential and advanced development of its high-quality projects.
- Galan Lithium Limited is an ASX-listed company developing lithium brine projects within South America’s lithium triangle on the Hombre Muerto salar in Argentina.
- The company has three high-quality projects in the works, including its flagship Hombre Muerto West and Candelas lithium projects in Argentina and Greenbushes South lithium project in Australia.
- The Hombre Muerto project leverages advantageous positioning near notable mining operations, including Livent Corporation’s El Felix project and hosts exceptional high-grade lithium and low impurity drilling possibilities.
- Geophysics has indicated Candela’s potential to host a substantial brine volume and provide significant amounts of processing water through low-grade brine treatment without using surface water from the Los Patos river.
- Galan acquired 80 percent ownership of the Greenbushes South lithium project through the sale and joint venture with Lithium Australian NL.
- Galan aims to transition into a major lithium project developer and remains committed to conducting fast-tracked lithium carbonate production in its prolific and mining-friendly jurisdictions of operation.
- Galan’s HMW Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) is on budget and on track for completion by end-CY2022.
- The HMW Mineral Resource update is on track for delivery in Q3 CY2022.
- The pilot plant construction is progressing well with the main pond completed with brine filling imminent and evaporation piloting to follow.
Hombre Muerto West Project
Tier 1- Location Worldwide for Li Brines
The 100 percent owned Hombre Muerto West project (HMW) is a large land property that sits on the west coast of the Hombre Muerto salar in Argentina, the second-best salar in the world for the production of lithium from brines. The property also leverages strategic positioning adjacent to notable competitors like Livent Corp. to the east.
The company has reported a combined total indicated resource of 2.3 million tonnes LCE at 946mg/l lithium. Additionally, the project hosts some of the lowest impurities and best grades in Argentina across its rich geological profile comprising groundwater sourcing volcanic rocks, faulting and hydrothermal activity. A December 2019 drilling campaign reported airlift test sampling of 1,010mg/l lithium over an approximately 330-meter interval, which confirmed outstanding grade averages at its main Rana de Sal target.
Galan has conducted a compelling scoping and PEA study, which revealed a competitive CAPEX of US$338 million, a low OPEX of US$3,518/t LCE and a production rate of 20ktpa targeting battery-grade lithium carbonate across the property. Galan ended 2021 with stronger and more compelling HMW economic study completed indicating unleveraged pre-tax NPV of US$2.2 billion, an IRR of 37.5 percent and less than three years of payback period. The company also revealed a resource of 2.3Mt LCE @ 946 mg/l Li for HMW.
The Candelas project is a 15-kilometer by 4-kilometer property along the prolific Los Patos channel in Argentina. The Rio Los Patos currently accounts for approximately 79 percent of incoming waters in the salar, creating world-class lithium draining opportunities from source rocks in the Cerro Galan volcano. Project geophysics and drilling have indicated the potential for Candelas to host a substantial volume of brine and upwards of 685kt LCE in maiden estimated resources.
Drilling at Candelas looking south.
The Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) for the Candelas project showed a Pre-tax NPV of US$1,225 million at an 8 percent discount rate and an IRR of 27.9 percent with a four year payback period. Candelas has a life projection of 25 years of 14ktpa of battery grade lithium carbonate (LCE). The cash production cost for Li2CO3 is at US$4,277/t, positioning the Candelas project as a low-cost developer in the lithium industry.Candelas also leverages potential for evaporation pods, processing infrastructure and has access to great, fresh process water. This advantageous positioning and exceptional geological and resource profile pose Candelas as a highly prospective world-class soluble lithium deposit.
Greenbushes South Lithium Project
The Greenbushes South lithium project covers approximately 43 square kilometers located three kilometers south of the world-class Greenbushes lithium mine, owned and managed by Talison Lithium Pty Ltd. Galan acquired 80 percent of the project from Lithium Australia NL in January 2021, including a 100 percent interest in an exploration license application (E70/4629).
The Greenbushes Lithium project and map of arsenic (AS) anomaly in laterite soil.
Greenbushes South hosts elevated abundances of pathfinder elements with well-defined anomalies adjacent to the property. The company has completed a review of the property’s datasets and historical laterite geochemistry data and remains excited to explore and develop its highly prospective project.
Galan’s project acquisition of Greenbushes South secures and consolidates a significant package of exploration ground hovering upwards of 396 square kilometers. The company completed its first exploration sampling and mapping work at the Greenbushes South Lithium project aimed to identify and map the surface expression of the DonnybrookBridgetown Shear Zone (DBSZ) that hosts the Greenbushes deposit.
Recent mapping indicates the major geological structure hosting the world classGreenbushes LCT pegmatite transects the current holdings. Furthermore, soil and rock chip samples show continuation of anomalous levels of pathfinder elements associated with Greenbushes Li-Ta-Sn mineralisation. Galan would continue targeted sampling and potential future localised geophysical work.
Richard Homsany - Non-Executive Chairman
Richard Homsany is an experienced corporate lawyer and has extensive board and operational experience in the resources and energy sectors. He is executive chairman of ASX listed uranium exploration and development company Toro Energy Limited, executive VP of Australia of TSX listed uranium exploration company Mega Uranium Ltd. and the principal of Cardinals Lawyers and Consultants, a boutique corporate and energy & resources law firm.
He is also the chairman of the Health Insurance Fund of Australia Ltd (HIF) and listed Redstone Resources Limited and Central Iron Ore Limited and is a non-executive director of Brookside Energy Ltd. Homsany’s past career includes time working at the Minera Alumbrera Copper and Gold mine located in the Catamarca Province, northwest Argentina.
Juan Pablo (‘JP’) Vargas de la Vega - Managing Director and Company Founder
Juan Pablo Vargas de la Vega is a Chilean/Australian mineral industry professional with 18 years of broad experience in ASX mining companies, stockbroking and private equity firms. JP founded Galan in late 2017. He has been a specialist lithium analyst in Australia, has also operated a private copper business in Chile and worked for BHP, Rio Tinto and Codelco.
Daniel Jimenez - Non-Executive Director
Daniel Jimenez is a civil, industrial engineer and has worked for a world leader in the lithium industry, Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile, for over 28 years. He was the VP of Sales of Lithium, Iodine and Industrial Chemicals where he formulated the commercial strategy and marketing of SQM’s industrial products and was responsible for over US$900 million worth of estimated sales in 2018.
Christopher Chalwell - Non-Executive Director
Christoper Chalwell has been involved in the gas to coal conversion of the Mica Creek Power station in Mt Isa and the Pasminco Century Mine in North Queensland. He also holds extensive experience with feasibility studies, commercial reviews for project funding, contract appraisal and award.
Terry Gardiner - Non-Executive Director
Terry Gardiner has over 20 years of experience in capital markets, stockbroking & derivatives trading. Prior, Gardiner had many years trading in equities & derivatives for his family accounts. Gardiner is currently a director of stockbroking firm Barclay Wells Limited and a non-executive director of Cazaly Resources Limited.
Jinyu (Ramond) Liu - Non-executive Director
Jinyu Liu is a mining executive with over 13 years of experience in the resources sector. He possesses a results-oriented track record developed in deal origination, project evaluation, negotiation, due diligence and capital raising. Liu is the founding managing partner of Havelock Mining investment, a Hong Kong investment company and has been involved with numerous ASX-listed companies. Liu is currently a director of Okapi Resources Ltd and Heritage Minerals. He previously held investment and technical roles at Fosun International, Rio Tinto, KCGM and Mt Gibson Iron.
Graeme Fox - Chief Financial Officer
Graeme Fox is an Australian CPA qualified accountant and experienced business analyst, with over 25 years of experience in the mining, contracting and transport industries, with a focus on strategic planning, financial modelling, investment evaluation, management accounting and compliance. During the last 20 years, Graeme’s career has been focused on the resources sector, including diverse roles throughout the value chain, working with BHP, WMC & Macmahon.