Venus Metals confirms widespread REE at Marvel Loch, drilling begins at Youanmi

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By Lorna Nicholas - 
Venus Metals ASX VMC Marvel Loch East REE Rare Earth Project

Rock chips returned up to 4,365ppm TREO in monzogranite bedrock at Marvel Loch.


Rock chip sampling at Venus Metals’ (ASX: VMC) Marvel Loch project in Western Australia has confirmed widespread rare earth elements (REE), while drilling has begun at the Youanmi gold joint venture.

The company recently completed field work and geochemical sampling programs at the project including collecting 38 rock chips.

Analysis of the rock chips returned up to 4,365 parts per million total rare earth oxides (TREO) in monzogranite bedrock in the eastern target area of the tenement.

Another sample taken from the western area assayed 2,292ppm TREO.

As well as rock chips, Venus also collected 93 samples of historical drill spoil. A drill spoil sample assayed returned 3,000ppm TREO in clay mineralisation.

Venus noted the assay results were around 10-to-20 times more than the average crustal abundance for TREO mineralisation – indicating the bedrock ground is “highly anomalous” for REE.

“Further, the magnetic rare earth oxide (MREO) percentage of rock chips above 1,000ppm averages 23% MREO with individual samples ranging as high as 28%.”

Advancing Marvel Loch

Petrographic studies of monzogranite bedrock have identified weathering and release of REE from bedrock in surface samples.

Venus says this is favourable for the formation of REE-enriched clays.

A detailed aeromagnetic and radiometric survey is now in progress to delineate further anomalies within the project’s 25km-long magnetic trend.

This will assist with further testing and refining drill targets.

Metallurgical work is also underway to evaluate cost-effective beneficiation of the monzogranite bedrock REE using comminution and magnetic separation processes.

Additionally, metallurgical testing is being carried out at ANSTO and ALS on 10 clay samples from the historical drill spoil.

Next steps will involve a shallow aircore drill program to identify clay-hosted REE.

A reverse circulation drilling program is also scheduled for early this year to test the primary REE mineralisation in the monzogranite bedrock at depth.

Drilling at Youanmi gold project

Over at the Youanmi gold joint venture in Western Australia, Venus and partner Rox Resources (ASX: RXL) have begun a 16,000m reverse circulation (RC) and a 7,000m diamond drilling program.

This campaign will continue up until April, with first assays expected next month.

The program aims to update the current resource of 27.9 million tonnes at 3.57 grams per tonne gold for 3.2 million ounces.

Drilling will also test the “exciting” near-mine Midway discovery and other regional targets.

“With drilling underway and feasibility studies advancing, investors can look forward to consistent news flow in 2023 as we look to improve the current resource and project metrics,” Rox managing director Rob Ryan said.

Venus has a 30% interest in the Youanmi gold joint venture, with Rox owning 70% and funding exploration.