Resource drilling at two locations within Lindian Resources’ (ASX: LIN) Gaoual bauxite project in West Africa has confirmed the presence of a high-grade conglomerate bauxite occurrence.
The first two holes drilled along the Bouba Plateaux in Guinea were designed to provide primary support for the confirmation of the occurrence at depth as well as grade confirmation of samples using a portable X-ray fluorescent (XRF) reader.
While neither hole was completed due to mechanical problems with the rig, the indicative average grade for each was determined to be greater than 60% aluminium oxide.
Alumina grades are reported to be “uniformly high from top to bottom”, which is typical of conglomerate bauxite due to the nature of its formation.
Managing director Shannon Green said the high-grade confirmation was a “tranformational milestone” for Lindian.
“The [high] indicative average grade results for each partially completed drill hole truly shows the world class nature of our project,” he said.
“This is a very exciting time for Lindian shareholders … [but] there is still much to do as we focus on completing the drilling program.”
Mr Green said mechanical issues prevented the completion of both drill holes to depth.
Drill rods became stuck in the first hole at the 9th metre down and were difficult to remove.
While recovery of the rods commenced, the site team moved to the second; however the hydraulic pump on the drill rig failed completely at 12m down-hole.
“Drilling to date has confirmed the presence of very high-grade conglomerate bauxite as mapped within the Bouba Plateaux; however, the true depth of the occurrence has not yet been confirmed due to the equipment issues,” he said.
Spare parts and a second drill rig have been mobilised from nearby Mali and are expected on site within the fortnight.
Lindian acquired an interest in the Gaoual project in April after signing an agreement with KB Bauxite Guinea SARLU and its sole shareholder Guinea Bauxite Pty Ltd.
The agreement allows Lindian the option to acquire an initial 51% by spending $1.45 million on exploration over two years after which it could increase its share to 75%.
The highly prospective Gaoual area was mapped during colonial control over Guinea in the 1950s and contains proven bauxite mineralisation, with initial assays from 27 bauxite samples averaging 53.57% aluminium oxide and 1.82% silicon dioxide.
It adjoins the world-class Koumbia bauxite project owned by Alliance Mining Commodities Ltd, and the Sangaredi project owned by the Société des Bauxites de Guinée’s joint venture between the Government of Guinea and the Halco Mining Consortium (comprising Alcoa, Rio Tinto and Dadco).
Guinea accounts for approximately 40% of the world’s bauxite reserves and has over 40 billion tonnes of resources.
At morning trade, shares in Lindian were up 10.34% to $0.032.