Recent exploration at Lithium Australia’s (ASX: LIT) Medcalf prospect in Western Australia has confirmed a significant extension of pegmatite swarms.
The prospect, within Lithium Australia’s Lake Johnston project, is located in the Yilgarn Craton close to major lithium projects in the region, including Kidman Resources’ (ASX: KDR) Earl Grey and Galaxy Resources’ (ASX: GXY) Mt Cattlin.
During January, the integrated lithium explorer carried out field mapping, further rock chip and geochemical soil sampling across the pegmatite swarms identified at Medcalf in 2018.
Following completion, Lithium Australia told shareholders today that the exploration had uncovered a significant extent of pegmatite swarms at Medcalf, with numerous stacked pegmatites holding abundant spodumene.
The swarm is comprised of at least 20 individual pegmatite dykes, all which dip towards the southwest.
According to the company, a majority of the spodumene-bearing pegmatites in the area investigated are members of a pegmatite swarm centred upon “Bontempelli Hill” and are the source of the prominent lithium-in-soil anomaly.
An exploration target for the dyke swarm has been estimated based upon the potential quantity and quality of mineralisation present and is in the range of 5-8 million tonnes grading 0.8-1.2% lithium oxide.
Lithium Australia managing director Adrian Griffin said the nearby Earl Grey deposit showed the potential the area holds to deliver major opportunities.
“Medcalf is no exception as there is a good probability of finding mineralisation beyond that outlined in outcrop to date,” he said.
“Indeed, the high tenor of the soil anomalies strongly suggests there in more to come in the immediate vicinity.”
With an exploration target defined, the company said drilling was now warranted to test the target.
Lithium Australia will aim to drill a fence of reverse circulation drill holes across the main outcropping area of spodumene-bearing pegmatites, which is also approximately coincident with the lithium geochemical soil anomaly.
The company will move to seek approvals from the relevant authorities, with drilling expected to kick off in Q4 2019.
In addition to Medcalf, Lithium Australia is firming up several potential feed sources for its proprietary technology and cemented its ownership of the Youanmi lepidolite project in December last year where sampling unveiled up to 4.2% lithium.
The company has also shored up its exposure to the advanced European battery and electric vehicle markets with the acquisition of the Sadisdorf lithium-tin-tungsten project in Germany.
Lithium Australia has also confirmed it had joined recycler Envirostream Australia after it issued shares to the lithium company. As a result, Mr Griffin has been appointed director of Envirostream.
Mr Griffin said he was pleased to partner with Australia’s leader in recycling lithium-ion batteries.
“The alliance strengthens our resolve to create a ‘circular’ economy by recovering metals from spent batteries, then rebirthing the battery components using our ground-breaking, patented cathode-powder production technology through VSPC Ltd,” he said.
“Recovering and adding value to battery waste material is a great step forward for the environment, a positive move for Australia’s strategic minerals strategy and a great opportunity for Lithium Australia and its shareholders.”
Lithium Australia shares fell 1.2% to $0.082 in late morning trade.