Eclipse Metals gets nod to take first steps at reviving historic mine in Greenland

Eclipse Metals ASX EPM Ivittuut cryolite mine historic mine in Greenland government approval
Eclipse Metals has been approved for an initial fieldwork program at its Ivittuut cryolite project.

Perth-based Eclipse Metals (ASX: EPM) will, from August, be able to begin initial work at its recently acquired mothballed Ivittuut cryolite mine in Greenland.

Cryolite is a rare mineral used as a fluxing agent to reduce energy consumption during aluminium production.

Until its closure in 1987, Ivittuut was the only place where cryolite was extracted on an industrial scale.

The government in Nuuk has given approval to undertake initial fieldwork.

Eclipse raised $2 million through a placement after acquiring the project in January.

It previously said in addition to cryolite, the Ivittuut project contains rare earth elements (REE), high purity silica, fluorite and base metals in the pit floor.

The approved work will include field assessment and general inspection and familiarisation by the new field team. Sampling of existing mullock heaps and geological bulk intrusions will also be undertaken.

Full project assessment now possible

Eclipse Metals will now be able to make an assessment of access, ground conditions and confirm geological features at Ivittuut.

“This appraisal will pave the way for further test work to facilitate calculation of a JORC-compliant mineral resource estimate and project feasibility study,” the company stated.

Eclipse executive chairman Carl Popal welcomed the decision of the government in this Danish self-governing territory.

“Approval from the Greenland government is an important step and allows us to move forward with our plans at Ivittuut, which once hosted the world’s largest known mineable resource of natural occurring cryolite as well as REE-bearing minerals and nearby REE-bearing carbonite formation,” he added.

The mine is on the coast and comes complete with a nearby wharf.

Eclipse is looking to generate short-term cash flow by extracting cryolite and REE from waste dumps.

There is additional REE mineralisation at the Gronnedal deposit, located 10km from Ivittuut.

High purity silica quartz in pit floor

Substantial high purity silica quartz in the existing pit will allow the company to become a near-term supplier to the electronic, solar, optical and silicon metal industry.

Eclipse has access to 19,000m of historical diamond drill core stored by the Greenland government, the work being done before the 1987 mine closure.

The Greenland Geological Survey Department has recorded 3.8 million tonnes of cryolite was produced over the life of the mine.

Ivittuut is located near Cape Desolation near the southern tip of Greenland.

The company also has interests in the Northern Territory and Queensland covering uranium, gold, vanadium and manganese.

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