A surface sampling program for lithium brine across Speciality Metals’ (ASX: SEI) northern Chile tenements has returned up to 2,360 parts per million lithium, which the company has labelled “outstanding”.
This is the company’s third round of sampling across its wholly-owned tenements in Salars de Pintados and Bellavista in Chile’s Atacama region.
Sampling was undertaken along the western margin of Salar de Pintados and the northern part of Salar Bellavista, with results ranging from 400ppm lithium to 2,360ppm lithium.
Speciality Metals stated the “very high lithium values” either matched or were well-above the lithium brine concentrations of producers in the area.
The company also claims its recent lithium brine results were greater than lithium values in surface samples taken from the Salar de Atacama, which produces about a third of the world’s lithium.
“The board is extremely pleased with the latest sampling results, given that they not only appear to strongly confirm the company’s exploration model and geological theories, but it has also led to the identification of other high-grade indicators outside of our existing concessions, which the company will seek to secure over the coming months,” Speciality Metals executive chairman Russell Krause said.
Mr Krause said the board would now focus on fine-tuning its targets for a drilling program, which is the company’s next exploration step across its tenements.
Speciality Metals’ noted its preferred drill targets will comprise the highest-grade surface anomalies combined with the thicker sedimentary fill to discover a large subsurface brine reservoir.
Once this has been found, the second priority will be to discover high-grade lithium brine at depth.
“The board and its geological team are confident that mineable quantities of lithium and other valuable mineral resources are still waiting to be discovered in northern Chile, something that Speciality Metals is hoping to achieve as part of its exploration model,” Mr Krause added.
Chile lithium concessions
Speciality Metals officially secured five exploration concessions in northern Chile in July last year. The concessions cover part of the Sara de Miraje.
In early January this year, Speciality Metals added a further five concessions to its lithium suite in the region after Chilean authorities granted licences in Salar de Bellavista.
An additional 15 exploration concessions were granted in Salar de Pintados in mid-March.
The Salar de Pintados licences are close to the Pan American highway and lithium processing infrastructure at the Antofagasta port.
In early afternoon trade, Speciality Metals’ share price was unchanged at A$0.026.