Encouraging vanadium assays at Tando Resources’ SPD project bode well for open pit development

Tando Resources ASX TNO SPD vanadium project high grade assays South Africa
Tando Resources is fast tracking a near-term, low capex operation at SPD with the aim of initial production later in 2019.

Tando Resources (ASX: TNO) has generated another set of high-grade vanadium results at its flagship SPD vanadium project in South Africa, with the near surface intercepts confirming open pit mine potential.

Importantly, Tando said the latest results from infill drilling extended the high-grade zone of 87 million tonnes at 1.07% vanadium pentoxide which lies within the project’s global mineral resource.

Notable intersections include 8m at 1.35% vanadium pentoxide from surface; 14.9m at 0.99% vanadium pentoxide from 1.5m, including 7m at 1.21% vanadium pentoxide from 1.5m; and 12m at 0.99% vanadium pentoxide from surface, including 9m at 1.13% vanadium pentoxide from 3m, and 6m at 1.27% vanadium pentoxide from 18.9m.

Commenting on the results, Tando said the intercepts demonstrated the continuity of grade and thickness of the vanadium mineralisation at SPD and further underpinned the potential for an open pit development.

The results come swiftly off the back of a batch of high-grade results released last month as the company moves to rapidly advance the vanadium asset towards monetisation.

Tando officially completed the phase two infill drilling program at SPD in December 2018, drilling a total of 83 holes for 6,002m.

Updated mineral resource

At the end of last year, Tando unveiled an impressive maiden JORC resource for SPD, leading the company to describe the project as a potential tier one asset.

SPD’s resource totals 588Mt grading 0.78% vanadium pentoxide, making the project one of the highest-grade mineral resources reported across the globe.

However, Tando is confident of further blue sky with work already underway on a resource update.

In addition to the abovementioned near surface results, drilling within the resource area also unearthed 10m at 1.01% vanadium pentoxide from 43m, including 3m at 1.34% vanadium pentoxide from 50m; and 7.8m at 1.11% vanadium pentoxide from 80m, within a wider interval of 9.8m at 1% vanadium pentoxide from 78m.

Tando said the recent drilling results would be incorporated into the new resource, expected to be announced in late Q1 2019.

“Given the continued high-grade results are consistent with results reported previously it is anticipated that the updated mineral resource should contain a high proportion of material in the indicated category if assay results for phase two continue as expected,” Tando said.

The increased detail from the infill drilling will also enable the higher-grade massive magnetite layers to be better delineated, increasing the potential for selective mining to meet offtake specifications.

Alongside a resource update, the company is making headway on a scoping study for the asset, with metallurgical and engineering studies “well advanced”.

Tando shares were sitting at $0.11 prior to market opening.

Lauren has more than seven years’ experience as a business journalist and editor in Australia and Southeast Asia. With specialist knowledge of the resources sector, including oil and gas, she has covered publicly listed companies of all sizes. Lauren has reported across a range of industries including mining and property.