A maiden JORC resource is imminent for Tando Resources (ASX: TNO) at its flagship SPD vanadium project in South Africa, after drilling returned more shallow and high-grade vanadium results.
The recently completed phase one drilling campaign aimed to convert the existing foreign SPD resource of 513 million tonnes grading 0.78% to comply with current JORC standards.
Latest assay results from the program include 34m at 1.03% vanadium from 22m, 24m at 0.73% vanadium from surface, with a 12m interval grading 1% vanadium and a 2m interval grading 1.72% vanadium.
Other notable assays were 16m at 0.82% vanadium from 10m, including 2m at 1.54% vanadium; 37m at 0.65% vanadium from 47m, including 8m at 1.1% vanadium and 2m at 1.56% vanadium; and 35m at 0.65% vanadium, including 9m at 1.04% vanadium.
Commenting on the latest results, Tando managing director Bill Oliver said the assays are further evidence of the high-grade, shallow vanadium mineralisation within the project.
The final assays from the phase one program are expected to all be received within the next month, with the maiden resource to be released soon after.
“While we await assays to finalise the resource estimation, the phase two drilling program is continuing along with drilling of the shallow vanadium pipes nearby,” Mr Oliver said.
“This multi-pronged strategy will give us strong news flow for several months as we push to unlock the value of this outstanding asset,” Mr Oliver added.
The second drilling campaign involves two rigs to update the resource to indicated category with a total of 58 holes for 5,550m to be drilled.
Additionally, drilling is also testing the high-grade vanadium pipes discovered at the project earlier this year where numerous rock chips returned vanadium grading in excess of 2%.
The company is evaluating the potential for near-term direct shopping ore operation at the high-grade pipes to generate early cash flow and underpin further exploration at the project.
Tando is fully funded to the completion of phase two drilling, resource estimations and metallurgical and mining studies.
The company is fast-tracking the project to take advantage of the soaring vanadium market and price which has surged from, US$10 per pound at the start of 2018 to its current price of around US$30/lb for 98% vanadium pentoxide.