Larvotto Resources unearths ‘bonanza grade’ rare earths at Merivale South

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By Lorna Nicholas - 
Larvotto Resources ASX LRV rare earth element oxide Merivale South TREO Eyre

Aircore drilling uncovered 1m at 1.26% (12,611ppm) TREO at Merivale South.


Rare earth explorer Larvotto Resources (ASX: LRV) has unearthed “bonanza grade” results from drilling at the Merivale South prospect, within its Eyre project in Western Australia.

The company recently completed aircore drilling at the prospect with assays returning up to 1.26% (12,611 parts per million) total rare earth oxides (TREO) with 3,787ppm magnetic REO.

One highlight intercept was 6m at 3,223ppm TREO from 19m, with 16.6% neodymium and praseodymium (NdPr) and 3.2% dysprosium, including 1m at 7,057ppm TREO from 22m, with 18.3% NdPr and 2.86% dysprosium.

Another intercept returned 12m at 2,326ppm TREO from 12m, with 16.7% NdPr and 3.7% dysprosium, including 1m at 12,616ppm TREO from 20m, with 22.24% NdPr and 1.56% dysprosium.

Drilling focused on a 500m section of an 8km anomaly that was identified via historical exploration.

Larvotto managing director Ron Heeks said the intercepts were “exceptionally high-grade” for ionic clay REE – noting mineralisation was found at shallow depths and remained open in all directions.

He said soil geochemical results indicate the higher-grade core of the anomaly extends longer than 3km, within the wider 8km of strike.

Comparable to other leading rare earth explorers

Mr Heeks pointed out that exploration at Merivale South had only just started and the high-grade hits “compare favourably” to those delivered by “leading companies globally” and demonstrated the “excellent” heavy TREO and NdPr ratios.

“The potential for significant amounts of TREO here is excellent, with Larvotto having identified two further proximate geochemical anomalies for further testing.”

“Based on first pass drilling, we have identified a potentially significant project,” he added.

Merivale South covers 620 square kilometres of ground and is 40km east of Norseman within the Albany-Fraser Range.

With the rare earths intercepted to-date at the prospect hosted within ionic clays, Mr Heeks says the project could be suitable for a “simple, low-cost” processing flowsheet.

Test work to confirm this theory is underway. Results from metallurgical testing will help with planning future drilling programs across the prospect.