Lotus Resources announces 6.9Mt mineral resource estimate for Livingstonia uranium deposit

Lotus Resources ASX LOT mineral resource estimate Livingstonia uranium deposit Malawi
Lotus’ global resources in Malawi now total 51.1Mlb of contained uranium.

Lotus Resources (ASX: LOT) has announced an inaugural mineral resource estimate for the Livingstonia uranium deposit in Malawi of 6.9 million tonnes grading 320 parts per million uranium oxide.

The figures increase the total global resource estimate for the company’s assets in southeastern Africa to 49.4Mt at 475ppm for 51.1 million pounds uranium oxide.

The increased resource is a result of recent exploration at Livingstonia, which confirmed results from historical drilling and extended the project’s footprint through preliminary step-out drilling.

It has been reported above a cut-off grade of 200ppm to reflect estimated processing costs and recoveries as well as projected product pricing.

Using an earlier cut-off of 150ppm, the updated resource estimate reports a total 6.5Mlbs uranium oxide which represents an increase of 0.5Mlbs on historic numbers.

The resource classification has been capped at inferred due to the historic nature of some of the drilling, the distribution of drill holes and issues surrounding the determination of bulk density values.

Lotus expects that once these issues are resolved, a higher category of resource will be declared.

The company hoped targeted infill and extension drilling at Livingstonia would increase the grade and amount of mineralisation over time.

Drilling program

The Livingstonia resource estimate was defined by a total of 12,113m of reverse circulation drilling across 102 vertical holes.

Of this, 9,903m of drilling was completed for 82 holes between 2007 and 2011 by previous owners Globe Uranium and Resource Star.

Last year, Lotus completed an additional 20 holes for 2,210m within and adjacent to the resource.

The most recent round of drilling targeted extensions of the known mineralisation and validated past results.

The central portion of the deposit was drilled on a variable grid due to drill site access issues, with drill distances ranging from 50m to 300m east-west and 50m to 200m north-south.

The grid separation expanded away from the centre of the deposit area and all drilling was vertical with a range between 70m and 170m and an average length of 120m.

Resource growth

Lotus has expanded the northern limits of the Livingstonia resource beyond historic resource boundaries, with potential to further extend the known mineralisation and delineate additional mineralised channels.

The deposit’s inferred resource suggests the presence of two higher-grade areas of mineralisation potentially controlled by faulting within the deposit area.

The mineralisation is believed to be similar to the mothballed Kayelekera mine, in which Lotus has an 85% share.

Kayelekera produced approximately 11Mlb of uranium between 2009 and 2014 and hosts a current resource of 46.3Mlbs uranium oxide.

It is currently the subject of a definitive feasibility study which will lead to a recommencement of operations.

Livingstonia is not included in the study, but has the potential to become a satellite operation for Lotus once the Kayelekera resource has been depleted.

Livingstonia acquisition

Lotus acquired the Livingstonia project in October for approximately $34,000, increasing the company’s landholding in the poorly-explored region to 187 square kilometres.

Multiple walk-up, drill-ready targets occur across the project’s tenements, including at the boundary of the Livingstonia resource where a previous airborne radiometric survey indicated that the mineralisation continues into Lotus’ existing acreage.

The area comprised the first phase of exploration for Lotus, with other prospective targets such as Livingstonia North and Chilumba due to be tested in future programs.

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