Group 6 Metals (ASX: G6M) will collaborate with the University of Tasmania on a critical minerals project which is expected to benefit its tungsten assets on the state’s King Island.
The collaboration with the university’s Centre for Ore Deposit and Earth Sciences (CODES) will focus on the research and development of environmentally-sustainable options for the production of critical minerals including tungsten.
CODES received a $3.5 million Federal Government grant earlier this month to commence the project in partnership with regional industry bodies.
Under the terms of the collaboration, Group 6 will provide the university with access to its Tasmanian tungsten assets including the under-construction Dolphin mine; and the historic Bold Head mine and its exploration tenements.
University staff will work with Group 6 staff on research projects, with the company to provide in-kind support, logistics, information and access to drill core, mining and processing activities.
Group 6 chief executive officer Keith McKnight said the collaboration would support the company’s ESG (environment, social and governance) objectives at King Island.
“Operating the Dolphin mine in an environmentally-sustainable way is a key part of our strategy as we move towards the production of first tungsten concentrate next year,” he said.
“This project has the potential to support our endeavours in this area and may also have a much broader impact for the critical minerals sector in Tasmania.”
The collaboration is expected to be mutually beneficial.
“We see several potential benefits, including an improvement to our exploration techniques which may lead to an increase in the resource base across our tungsten assets,” Mr McKnight said.
“This project will also aim to enhance our recoveries of tungsten in the years ahead as we become a tungsten producer of global significance on King Island.”
The collaboration with University of Tasmania is believed to “align well” with Group 6’s vision of maximising tungsten metal extraction from its orebodies and its intention to “lead the way” with environmentally-sensitive downstream processing.
Tungsten is recognised by governments worldwide as one of several critical minerals which will be essential for sustainable economic growth and development in the future.
The Dolphin mine is host to the highest-grade tungsten deposit of significant size in the western world.