Amid mounting demand Lake Resources (ASX: LKE) will undertake a new drilling program at its other lithium brine projects within Argentina’s Lithium Triangle, while it advances its flagship Kachi asset in the region.
Starting in late January, Lake will carry out a 10-hole for 4,000m drilling program at its wholly-owned projects – Olaroz, Cauchari and Paso.
These assets are within Argentina’s Jujuy province and are close to Orocobre’s Allkem and Cauchari operations, as well as Ganfeng and Lithium America’s Cauchari lithium brine asset.
Lake has previously confirmed the presence of brines at its Cauchari project. In 2019, drilling at this asset returned 343m at 493 milligrams per litre of lithium from 117m. The highest-grade interval was 540mg/l of lithium.
The company noted the brines and grades were similar to the Ganfeng and Lithium America Cauchi operation, which adjoins Lake’s tenements.
“Lake anticipates similar potential at Olaroz and Paso,” the company stated.
Second rig to accelerate exploration and testing
Lake is also sourcing a second rotary rig to potentially work alongside the diamond one to quickly quantify any brines identified, develop aquifers and conduct pumping tests.
Additionally, passive seismic geophysics are underway, and may be followed by electromagnetic surveys over key areas.
Once brines have been extracted, samples will be tested using Lake’s direct lithium extraction methods – similar to previous testing on Kachi brines.
A scoping study will then be undertaken, and if a resource is successfully established, prefeasibility study work will be completed.
Lake managing director Steve Promnitz said the company had received “increasing demand” from potential off-takers which were seeking a “secure supply of high quality, environmentally friendly lithium”.
This demand is what has prompted the company to accelerate exploration activities at Olaroz, Cauchari and Paso.
Kachi lithium project
Exploration and development at Olaroz, Cauchari and Paso will continue in parallel with advanced activities at Lake’s flagship Kachi project.
Earlier this week, Lake noted continued drilling at Kachi supported a doubling of future planned production to 50,000 tonnes per annum of lithium carbonate equivalent.