Lithium explorer and developer Ardiden (ASX: ADV) has encountered thick mineralised zones containing large spodumene crystals while drilling at its wholly-owned Seymour Lake lithium project in Ontario, Canada.
The zones were intersected in eight holes drilled at various depths on the North Aubry prospect and included up to 19.38 continuous metres of spodumene-bearing pegmatite layers. The mineralisation also remained open in all directions, the company reported.
According to Ardiden, the presence of these zones confirmed the down-plunge continuity potential of the lithium mineralisation extending north-east of North Aubry, where the company recently defined a maiden mineral resource estimate of 1.23 million tonnes at an average grade of 1.43% lithium oxide.
The drilling is part of an ongoing campaign to expand resources at the Aubry deposit on the project. In November, Ardiden reported drilling at its South Aubry prospect had intersected multiple spodumene-bearing zones of up to 21.43m thickness from shallow depths.
The company is awaiting assay results for the holes but said plans were already underway to carry out further exploration drilling across all its Aubry prospects.
“The continued drilling success at North Aubry clearly demonstrates the potential to expand the mineral resource at Seymour Lake, providing strong support for the company’s fast-track development strategy, including its immediate objective of exercising the term sheet with its Chinese development partner, Yantai,” Ardiden stated.
The company announced this term sheet with Yantai Jinyuan Mining Machinery Co Ltd in June. It outlines a proposal for a design, build, operate and transfer arrangement for a proposed lithium concentrate processing facility at Seymour Lake.
Last month, Ardiden said a preliminary development strategy had been formulated with Yantai following a North Aubry site visit. Several development options are being considered, including the construction of the processing facility on site at North Aubry, as well as a loading facility at the Ferland train station.
Shares in Ardiden were up more than 5% by midday trade.