AVZ Minerals identifies spodumene-rich zones from new drillholes at Manono lithium-tin project

AVZ Minerals ASX spodumene zones drillholes Manono lithium tin project Democratic Republic of Congo DRC
AVZ’s Carriere de l’Este pegmatite deposit is now confirmed at 1.2km in length and remains open at both ends and down dip.

Wide-spaced resource drilling at the Carriere de l’Este pegmatite deposit within AVZ Minerals’ (ASX: AVZ) Manono lithium-tin project in the Democratic Republic of Congo has confirmed high-grade mineralisation directly beneath thin soil and laterite cover.

Assay results from four new “step-out” holes located on section lines along strike from initial drilling in 2017 have identified additional high-grade spodumene-rich zones for future infill resource estimation programs.

Best intersections included 12.05 metres at 2.41% lithium oxide and 735 parts per million tin; 21.09m at 2.1% lithium oxide and 943ppm tin; and 16m at 2.49% lithium oxide and 571ppm tin.

All holes were collared in slightly weathered pegmatite from top of hole and returned significant intersections of more than 2% lithium oxide.

The Carriere de l’Este pegmatite deposit is now confirmed at 1.2 kilometres in length and remains open at both ends and down dip.

Higher-grade areas

AVZ managing director Nigel Ferguson said the results will assist in targeting areas of higher grade material (greater than 2% lithium oxide) at shallow depths as potential spodumene concentrate feed material to Manono’s new processing plant.

“The assays from these four new holes show highly-encouraging mineralisation 400m closer to the historical [Carriere de l’Este] open pit, as well as a more complex geology with intrusions of aplitic pegmatite and dolerite possibly along late-stage faults,” he said.

“The holes were deliberately spaced widely to help track the location of high-grade zones mapped further to the southwest along this massive deposit and to that extent, [our] drilling has been successful.”

Infill work

The information will now be used to plan focused infill work along the high-grade zones including a closer drilling pattern to generate near-surface indicated or measured resources for conversion to reserves prior to commissioning of the plant.

“The possible delineation of high-grade future reserves has the potential to initially feed higher-grade ore to the plant, providing increased spodumene concentrate production volumes from the start of operations,” Mr Ferguson said.

“[Additionally] despite future tin production accounting for only a small percentage of Manono’s overall revenue, a strengthening tin and tantalum price continues to justify some exploration expenditure to gain information on the potential scale of these deposits which may sustain a separate tin mining business,” he added.

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