Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Exco Resources cash backed and on the move, shares jump 10.53%

Exco Resources (ASX: EXS) shares rallied 10.53% to A$0.21 today on the exchange of nearly 4.5 million shares as of 2.19pm (AEDT).

The company is certainly well funded with $58.6 million, or around $0.164 per share, cash in hand at the end of the December quarter.

Strong cashflows from the White Dam Gold Project in South Australia continue to boost Exco’s bank balance. During the December quarter the company received $9.5 million in revenues for the three months at an average price of A$1,612 per ounce. 

Again gold production exceeded expectations with 8,421 ounces produced as recovery levels from the leach process continue to exceed initial predictions.

Meanwhile, Exco is nearing the start of mining at the Vertigo gold project in the Drew Hill area of South Australia.

The company has strengthened the development of the project with a $1.3 million commitment on exploration by joint venture partner Polymetals Mining (ASX: PLY) in exchange for an increase in interest to 50%.

Importantly, this will allow Exco to continue aggressive exploration in Queensland but not at the detriment to the White Dam region in South Australia. 

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24737/exco-resources-cash-backed-and-on-the-move-shares-jump-1053--24737.html

Pan Asia Corporation shares continue to outperform, up 21.74%

Pan Asia Corporation (ASX: PZC) posted gains of 21.74% to A$0.14 today, making it one of the biggest movers for the day.

For the second day Pan Asia went against the broader market which shed 17.6 points, or 0.4%, at 1.49pm (AEDT).

The company has been gaining momentum at its flagship Transcoal Minergy (TCM) Coal Project in South Kalimantan, Indonesia, with a US$1 million funding commitment for drilling from international coal heavyweight Kopex.

Pan Asia received a better than expected 115% Resource upgrade to 114.6 million tonnes at the project in mid-October last year. Importantly, 62% of the resource is in the higher confidence Measured and Indicated categories.

The TCM project hosts high quality export thermal coal with an average calorific value of 6,566kcal/kg, 6.41% total moisture, 13.52% ash and 1.52% sulphur.

Kopex has previously recommended the TCM project be advanced to final feasibility stage, following a positive independent study, which signals its view of the project's viability.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24736/pan-asia-corporation-shares-continue-to-outperform-up-2174--24736.html

UXA Resources targeting copper gold in drilling south of Olympic Dam mine

UXA Resources (ASX: UXA) and partner Straits Resources (ASX: SRL) have commenced diamond drilling at the Stuart Shelf project, near BHP Billiton’s (ASX: BHP) Olympic Dam mine and OZ Minerals’ (ASX: OZL) Prominent Hill mine.

Operator Straits has begun drilling a 3 hole, 3,600 metre program, targeting a number of geophysical anomalies.

At the Winjabbie prospect, Straits will follow up on previous drilling by UXA, which intersected 42 metres at 0.35% copper.

Stuart Shelf comprises nine tenements covering 3,300 square kilometres, located in the same iron oxide-copper-gold prospective area as Olympic Dam, which produces copper, gold, silver and uranium, and the Prominent Hill copper gold mine.

An expansion is underway at Olympic Dam to increase copper production to more than 750,000 tonnes per annum, from 180,000 tonnes per annum, while Prominent Hill production in 2012 is expected to be 100,000-110,000 tonnes of copper and 130,000-150,000 ounces of gold.

The Stuart Shelf project licences are subject to a joint venture agreement with Straits, which has the right to earn a 70% interest in the tenements by spending A$10 million on exploration over seven years.

This agreement was signed in September 2010.

UXA has attracted a number of strategic partners, including Straits, and part of its strategy is focused on retaining exposure to advanced exploration projects through joint ventures.

Dome 5 December drilling program
In other company news, UXA began a second phase mud-rotary and diamond drilling program at the Dome 5 lead, zinc, silver prospect in December.

The 8 hole, 2,800 metre program is designed to test the potential exploration target of 5-10 million tonnes of mineralised body at 10% lead plus zinc, with silver credits.

UXA is aiming to better define the extent of mineralisation at Dome 5 and enable the definition of a maiden resource estimate.

Drilling carried out in May 2011 identified a 500 metre wide zone of high grade intercepts, including 3 metres at 15.8% lead plus zinc and 63 grams per tonne silver from 315 metres.

A second zone of mineralisation 5 metres below the upper zone returned 1.29 metres at 6.88% lead plus zinc and 20g/t silver from 322.76 metres.

Part of the Mundi Plains project, Dome 5 is located 50 kilometres northwest of Broken Hill in New South Wales.

Results from the current drilling program are expected in February.

Nabarlek Uranium

At the Nabarlek Uranium Project in the Northern Territory, a radon sampling and soil geochemical program at the Nabarlek North tenement late in 2011 identified a new uranium target close to Uranium Equities’ (ASX: UEQ) new high grade U40 discovery.

Exploration at U40 has returned intercepts of 6.8 metres at 6.71% uranium oxide.

Nabarlek North is 280 metres immediately north of the U40 area. The strongest area of anomalism at Nabarlek North is located in the southeast corner of the tenement, immediately west of a recent reverse circulation drilling program that returned anomalous results.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24722/uxa-resources-targeting-copper-gold-in-drilling-south-of-olympic-dam-mine-24722.html

Peak Resources: Positive signs as metallurgical test work leaches 88% of rare earths at Ngualla

Peak Resources (ASX: PEK) is a company on the move led by a management and board team that turned a virgin rare earth discovery by the company a couple of years ago in Africa into one of the largest and highest grade new rare earth discoveries in recent years.

The latest positive news flow the Ngualla Rare Earth Project in southern Tanzania, (which is already drawing comparisons to Lynas Corporations' (ASX: LYC) Mt Weld), is some encouraging preliminary metallurgical testwork.

The highlight is non–optimised initial acid leach test work on a composite sample of weathered mineralisation leaches 88% of rare earths, with further leach test work now having been prioritised.

This work is to evaluate the possibility of a relatively simple processing route to produce a high grade rare earth concentrate for this higher grade, near surface portion of the Ngualla rare earth mineralisation.

Peak said that simple wet table characterisation of primary fresh rock rare earth mineralisation produces positive beneficiation results in preliminary sighter tests. The company remains well funded with $5.7 million cash in the bank at the end of 2011.

Mineralogical studies at a glance

Mineralogical studies have shown that bastnasite and synchysite are the main rare earth minerals and occur within a barite – iron oxide hydroxide lithology in the weathered zone and a carbonate rich lithology with barite in fresh carbonatite.

Alumina is negligible and there are no clay minerals. Uranium and thorium levels are very low at 17ppm and 37ppm average respectively within +1% REO mineralisation in the Southern Rare Earth Zone. The rare earth carbonates are predominantly liberated, with grain sizes between 10 and 120 microns.

Beneficiation of primary mineralisation

Initial beneficiation studies on a bulk diamond core sample of fresh rock rare earth mineralisation from the Southern Rare Earth Zone returned encouraging upgrades of from wet table test work. This initial basic baseline test work succeeded in concentrating 84% of the head feed mineralisation, with a grade of 1.69% REO, 290% (almost 3 x’s) to 4.87% REO.

The concentrate is contained within just 34% of the mass of the original feed material (an alternative presentation of these initial results is that 66% of the original mass is able to be discarded for the loss of just 16% of the mineralisation).

Although this single stage preliminary beneficiation characterisation work has not immediately produced a commercial grade concentrate, it has demonstrated the potential for simple gravity separation to form an important component of a multi – part processing stream for this important second style of rare earth mineralisation at Ngualla.

News flow from Ngualla - including maiden JORC

Peak has forecast that the highly anticipated JORC Resource from Ngualla will be delivered in the March quarter 2012, prepared by consultants Hellman and Schofield.

There will also be a flow of drilling results in the short term, with 16 reverse circulation holes from the Southern Zone and 19 holes from the Northern Zone pending - and expected within weeks.

Northern Zone heats up

Just last month from the Northern Zone, Peak delivered some niobium – tantalum and phosphate highlights which included:

- 24 metres at 1.12% Nb2O5 and 226ppm Ta2O5 from 4 metres;
- 28 metres at 20.4% phosphate from surface;
- 52 metres at 0.48% Nb2O5 and 108ppm Ta2O5 from surface; and
- 20 metres at 0.45% Nb2O5 and 103ppm Ta2O5 from 56 metres.

Where the story becomes even more interesting in this Northern Zone is that they include the highest grade niobium intersection returned to date. More results are pending for the Northern Zone which includes data from the remaining 19 holes of the reconnaissance program.

Highlighting the prospectivity of the area, the grade, near surface nature and potential extent of this second style of mineralisation provide the potential for more high grade near surface rare earth intersections.

Southern Zone broad intersections

Along with the Northern Zone results producing some very strong numbers recently, Peak also delivered last month a new set of near surface drilling results from an additional ten holes at the project, which have extended the Southern Rare Earth Zone 200 metres in a north - south direction. Adding further to the potential it still remains open to both the north and south.

Rare earth peak results from January include 128 metres at 4.17% REO from surface; 75.70 metres at 5.82% REO from surface, including 10.74 metres at 10.1% REO; and 39.16 metres at 4.65% REO from surface, including 8.30 metres at 7.66% REO.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24715/peak-resources-positive-signs-as-metallurgical-test-work-leaches-88-of-rare-earths-at-ngualla-24715.html

Ram Resources adds to board with new non-executive director, appoints acting MD

Ram Resources (ASX: RMR) has appointed James Scott as a non-executive director of the company and boosted non-executive director James Lumley to the position of acting managing director.

Lumley replaces Michael Drew who resigned his position as a director of the company.

Scott has more than 30 years experience in the corporate management and investment field in Australia, South Africa, United Kingdom and United States.

He is a joint founder and director of Perth-based corporate advisory firm Glen Oaks, which specialises in the sourcing of global investment opportunities, capital raisings and IPO listings.

From 1987 to 2010, Scott held directorships with Fergusson Bros. (now Investec Securities), Societe Generale, Magnum Global Funds, Patersons Corporate Finance and Carmichael Corporate Finance.

Scott’s appointment comes as Ram prepares to deliver a maiden Resource for the Aries Prospect, part of the Motzfeldt Project, in South Greenland.

Earlier this month Ram confirmed long, high grade intersections in all holes drilled, with results of 44 metres at 2,067 parts per million (ppm) niobium, 246ppm tantalum, 4,900ppm total rare earth oxides and 9,475ppm zirconium.

Adding to the prospect’s potential, drilling also unexpectedly returned high grade mineralisation beneath an area covered by snowfields that has not been previously mapped or sampled.

Ram is anticipating the completion of a maiden Inferred Resource for the Aries Prospect, which is being compiled by SRK Consulting, this month.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24723/ram-resources-adds-to-board-with-new-non-executive-director-appoints-acting-md-24723.html

Syndicated Metals discovers broad intersections of high grade manganese near Kalman in Mt Isa

Syndicated Metals (ASX: SMD) has uncovered high grade manganese of up to 45 metres at 23% from rock chip sampling at the Manganese Ridge prospect located 400 metres from the Kalman copper-gold-molybdenum-rhenium deposit in Northwest Queensland.  

Kalman is situated 60 kilometres to the southeast of the major mining centre of Mount Isa.

Further highlights of the rock chip sampling included one peak 10 metre sample at 34% manganese.

Managing director Russell Davis said while the search for manganese is not Syndicated’s priority, its close proximity to Kalman, the prominent outcropping nature of the mineralisation and potentially significant tonnage potential indicated that the area warranted some investigation.

“The encouraging results from the initial rock chip sampling support this view,” he said.

“There are clearly thicker and higher grade sections within the six kilometre strike length and these areas will be the target of follow up work to identify near surface bodies of economically recoverable manganese oxide ore.”

Another plus for the Manganese Ridge prospect is its favourable location in relation to mining infrastructure, including a railway line, and the nature of the occurrence of the mineralisation on a prominent ridge which would reduce any stripping required.

A total of 78 rock chip samples were collected along 31 lines. The average line width was 30 metres with a length weighted average of 13% manganese.

24% of the samples have manganese grades in excess of 20%, and 37% in excess of 15%.

Three holes drilled for base metals to around 150 metres vertical depth below the manganese rich outcrops returned lower order manganese values (>5%) within the sediments indicating the high (>20%) manganese values from the rock chip sampling are probably a result of enrichment within the near surface oxidised zone.

The near surface zone has not previously been tested by drilling and further exploration for potentially economic material should focus in this area.

This latest discovery at Manganese Ridge further confirms the multi-metal mineral potential of the immediate Kalman area, which includes Kalman (copper-gold-molybdenum-rhenium), Andy’s Hill (copper-gold and rare earth elements), Pandora’s Gift (copper-gold) and Manganese Ridge (manganese).

Just last week Syndicated unearthed consistent high grade copper-gold mineralisation over 900 metres of strike from rock chip sampling along the Pindora Fault, 5 kilometres to the southeast of the Kalman deposit.

Kalman is an advanced molybdenum-rhenium and copper-gold deposit covering 700 square kilometres in the mineral-rich Mt Isa region.

A review of the existing 60.8 million tonnes at 0.32% copper, 0.05% molybdenum, 1.19 grams per tonne (g/t) rhenium and 0.15g/t gold JORC Resource is currently underway.

Importantly, the Kalman deposit has the potential to be a company maker for Syndicated with its significant exploration potential as a result of its sizeable targets.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24720/syndicated-metals-discovers-broad-intersections-of-high-grade-manganese-near-kalman-in-mt-isa-24720.html

Energy Ventures eyeing A$1.6m to continue technical assessment at Aurora in U.S.

Energy Ventures (ASX: EVE) is looking to the market to raise A$1.6 million through a non-renounceable Rights Issue to support the ongoing technical assessment of the Aurora uranium deposit in Oregon, U.S.

Up to $750,000 of the Rights Issue is underwritten. Energy Ventures will issue about 45 million shares at $0.035 per share.

The Rights Issue will be offered to all eligible shareholders on the basis of one new share for every seven and a half (7.5) shares held.

All Energy Ventures shareholders who are registered as at 5pm (AEDT) on 9 February 2012 and who have a registered address in Australia or New Zealand can participate in the raising.

Aurora Metallurgical Results

Just yesterday Energy Ventures revealed to the market a positive set of initial metallurgical results, which show, importantly, the potential for efficient removal of internal waste through scrubbing and screening with minimal uranium losses.

This would allow bulk mining of the resource and upgrading of mineralisation prior to leaching. 

Aurora displays strong potential due to hosting a near surface, flat lying zone of higher grade mineralisation amenable to open pit mining.

The Aurora deposit has a total resource base of 38 million pounds eU3O8, comprising an Indicated Resource of 36.7 million pounds eU3O8 at 253 parts per million, and an Inferred Resource of 1.2 million pounds eU3O8 at 151 parts per million.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24718/energy-ventures-eyeing-a16m-to-continue-technical-assessment-at-aurora-in-us-24718.html

Central Petroleum in pre open pending capital raising announcement

Central Petroleum (ASX: CTP) has been granted a trading halt by the ASX pending the release of a proposed capital raising announcement, with the company's shares placed in pre-open.

Central Petroleum has not yet indicated where the potential capital injection will be allocated, but the company is in a very interesting position and earlier in the week announced some positive news for Surprise 1.

An engineering report by RPS Energy indicates that the Surprise-1 Re-entry H well, in the Amadeus Basin, could access stock tank oil initially in place (STOIIP) of between 0.5 and 2 million barrels in an area proximal to the well.

The halt will last until the earlier of an announcement being made to the market, or the opening of trade on Friday 3 February.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24717/central-petroleum-in-pre-open-pending-capital-raising-announcement-24717.html

Alkane Resources may have unlocked potential new porphyry copper, gold complex at Bodangora

Alkane Resources (ASX: ALK) has confirmed the copper-gold potential of the Glen Hollow Prospect at its Bodangora Project in New South Wales, with reconnaissance core drilling offering further encouragement the project may host a new porphyry copper-gold complex.

Highlight intersections include 7.8 metres at 1.04% copper and 0.23 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from 368.2 metres, including 0.6 metres at 10.5% copper and 2.45g/t gold from 370.2 metres, and 60.1 metres at 0.1% copper and 0.15g/t gold from 81.4 metres, including 15.9 metres at 0.16% copper and 0.33g/t gold from 81.4 metres.

Exploration to date, and in particular drilling, has tested a very small portion of what is seen as a very prospective intrusive complex covering 12 square kilometres.

Defining the potential for a new porphyry copper-gold complex at Bodangora is that several key geological features associated with these types of systems have been confirmed including:

- Visible, multi-phase, multi-styled copper-gold mineralisation;
- Large multi-phase intrusive complex with shonshonitic affinities;
- Extensive potassic alteration of the intrusive complex; and
- Late stage mineralised syenite dykes.

Another defining factor of the project’s potential is that detailed mapping of the Comobella area shows several magmatic and petrographical similarities to areas of porphyry copper-gold systems elsewhere in the Molong Volcanic Belt, such as Newcrest Mining’s (ASX: NCM) large deposits at Cadia-Ridgeway.

Subsequent soil geochemistry and induced polarisation surveys identified a number of prospective areas which were evaluated by broadly spaced reverse circulation drilling in early 2011.

The best results were returned from the Glen Hollow prospect with intersections of 46 metres at 0.9g/t gold and 0.25% copper from 60 metres, including 18 metres at 1.7g/t gold and 0.45% copper from 85 metres.

The geochemical database for the samples will be analysed in detail to identify any alteration vectors present.

A program of reverse circulation drilling is set to begin later in the March quarter with these holes sited to assist in further clarifying the key geological aspects of the system.

Alkane also plans to undertake an extensive series of petrological studies and sulphide mineral analyses to assess geochemical vectors for porphyry mineralisation.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24714/alkane-resources-may-have-unlocked-potential-new-porphyry-copper-gold-complex-at-bodangora--24714.html

Monday, 30 January 2012

Algae.Tec: Standard and Poors initiates Factual Stock Report coverage

Algae.Tec (ASX: AEB) has become the subject of Factual Stock Report coverage by New York financial services firm Standard and Poors.

“The S&P coverage will extend our reach to a wide range of investor audiences in the USA and internationally providing weekly updates on pricing, trading volume, recent developments, a financial review, key operating information, industry and peer comparisons, and institutional holdings analysis,” executive chairman Roger Stroud said.

The coverage coincides with Algae.Tec’s recent successful $5 million capital raising. This will fund the fast tracking of the company’s recently announced commercial projects.

The market continues to respond to the company's recent milestones including the signing of major deals with companies in China, Sri Lanka and Europe.

Algae.Tec is now well funded for 2012, as the company continues to talk to groups about potential offtake agreements.

Shandong Kerui Group Holding Milestone Deal

Earlier this month, Algae.Tec signed a binding memorandum of understanding for a 50:50 equity joint venture in China with Shandong Kerui Group Holding to build the first biofuels and carbon capture facility in China.

Importantly, Shandong will be putting half the equity into the project, which shows very strong commitment to the project on their part.

The 250-module biofuels facility will be built in Dongying, in Shandong Province, and will produce about 33 million litres of algae derived transport oil and 33,000 tonnes of biomass per annum at a combined value of over $40 million. It will capture 137,000 tonnes of waste carbon dioxide.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24686/algaetec-standard-and-poors-initiates-factual-stock-report-coverage-24686.html

TNG: Buy recommendation and price target five times current, Old Park Lane

TNG Limited (ASX: TNG) has received a buy recommendation from UK based Old Park Lane Capital.

Target price:  $0.45
Last trade:     $0.85

The following is an extract from the Old Park Lane Capital report.

Buy maintained

We maintain our BUY recommendation on the stock and 45¢ price target. The onset of pilot plant test-work moves TNG into a critical stage of development at Mount Peake.

We would view successful pilot plant test results for the new TIVAN™ metallurgical process as a major de-risking event, and at present, the company’s shares appear cheap, prior to a number of key milestones that TNG plans to complete during H1 2012.

Summary information

TNG Limited announced that construction of a pilot plant is scheduled to commence at the end of January 2012.

The pilot plant represents the next key phase of the metallurgical test-work programme being undertaken on material from the company’s flagship Mount Peake iron-vanadium deposit in the Northern Territory, Australia.

The pilot plant will provide TNG with a definitive test of the commercial potential of the company’s proprietary metallurgical process, and as such we await results with interest.

The TIVAN™ test. The pilot plant will thoroughly test concentrate from Mount Peake with the aim of providing a definitive test of the commercial potential of the proprietary TIVAN™ process - a potentially revolutionary new metallurgical process for vanadium, iron and titanium recovery being developed by TNG and partner METS pty Ltd. The pilot plant will be assembled at the ALS-AMMTEC laboratory in Perth.

Competitive advantage. If proven, TIVAN™ offers a number of advantages over standard processing including lower capex and opex, higher recoveries and purity, and the ability to produce three product streams – vanadium pentoxide, titanium oxide, and ferric oxide.

TNG believes that TIVAN™, a hydrometallurgical process, has the potential to be approximately 40% cheaper than standard pyrometallurgical process costs. The commercialisation of the process underpins TNG’s development proposition at Mount Peake. The technology also has the potential to be rolled out and applied to other vanadium deposits globally.

The timeline. Operation and testing of the pilot plant is scheduled to commence in March 2012 with final results for vanadium pentoxide expected by the end of Q2 2012. Further test-work to investigate the recovery of iron and titanium products is scheduled for early Q2 2012.

Definitive feasibility. The pilot plant test-work results will flow into the Definitive Feasibility Study for Mount Peake which TNG has scheduled to commence in the current quarter. The DFS will also consider further commercial options including the potential to produce a value-add downstream ferro-vanadium product.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24683/tng-buy-recommendation-and-price-target-five-times-current-old-park-lane-24683.html

Integra Mining to take up substantial stake in neighbour Southern Gold

Integra Mining (ASX: IGR) is set to take up a 10% interest in Southern Gold (ASX: SAU), whose Bulong Gold Project neighbours Integra's Randalls Gold Project in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia.

Integra will invest A$1.35 million in Southern Gold at A$0.05 per share through a share subscription agreement.

Southern Gold is also planning a rights issue to shareholders that aims to raise a further $3 million.

Integra has agreed to take up its full entitlement under the proposed rights issue, and also has the option to underwrite the issue.

This would allow Integra to maintain its cornerstone investment position in Southern Gold. An ultimate cap of 15% has been placed on Integra’s shareholding.

Southern Gold will use the funds raised through the share placement and rights issue to advance evaluation studies into mining the Cannon Gold Resource, 30 kilometres southeast of Kalgoorlie.

The wholly owned Cannon Gold Resource is part of the Bulong Gold Project, which comprises the Bulong South and Bulong East tenements.

One potential processing option for Bulong Gold is Integra’s Salt Creek Gold Processing Facility.

Salt Creek is part of Integra’s Randalls Project, which comprises resources at Salt Creek, Maxwells and Cock-eyed Bob as well as exploration prospects at Lucky Bay, Mohegan, Lady Eileen and Red Dale.

Earlier this month, Integra achieved 100,000 ounces of gold production at Randalls, less than a year after ramping up to first commercial gold production in March 2011.

Importantly, Southern Gold has agreed to grant Integra a pre-emptive right to match or better any third party offer to purchase, treat or sell ore or dore from the Cannon Gold resource or to purchase the Cannon Gold resource mining lease.

This pre-emptive right has a maximum term of 3 years from completion of the placement and is conditional on Integra not disposing of any of the placement shares to a third party.

Integra managing director Chris Cairns said the agreement with Southern Gold was a strategic move for the company.

“The transaction with Southern Gold is in keeping with Integra’s strategy of growing our gold business and generating shareholder value. We see Southern Gold as a solid investment with real opportunity for near-term gold production along with a prospective tenement portfolio nearby to our operations”.

Completion of the share placement to Integra is due to occur on Wednesday February 1, 2012.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24676/integra-mining-to-take-up-substantial-stake-in-neighbour-southern-gold-24676.html

Xceed Resources delivers maiden thermal coal Reserve for Moabsvelden

Xceed Resources (ASX: XCD) has delivered a 43.8 million tonne initial Reserve for the 74% owned Moabsvelden thermal coal project in South Africa’s key coal region of Witbank.

Following the establishment of Measured Resources, as well as the recent completion of a mining work program by mining consultants Belton Mining Group, Xceed has released Proved and Probable reserves of 30.7 million tonnes and 13.1 million tonnes respectively.

Managing director Ian Culbert told Proactive Investors Xceed is confident that it will be able to extend the mine life by potentially going underground.

“Our expectation at this stage is that a mine life in the order of 14 to 15 years currently exists, with excellent potential to increase this further,” he said.

“With total Proven and Probable open cast reserves of 43.8 million tonnes, the Moabsvelden coal project is well positioned to become a substantial, long life mine.”

Xceed continues to unlock the potential of Moabsvelden, and in October last year upgraded the Resource by 20% to 66.3 million tonnes and, importantly, 96% of this Resource is in the high confidence Measured category.

Extensive washability testwork has confirmed the resource contains a significant fraction of export grade thermal coal as well as domestic grade coal, with each accounting for about half of the total product.

The results of the washability testwork indicate that the combined average theoretical coal product yield to produce a primary product of 26 megajoules per kilogram (MJ/kg) and a 20MJ/kg secondary product is 63%.

The initial JORC coal Reserves for Moabsvelden have been prepared as part of a Definitive Feasibility Study currently being finalised, and also as part of Xceed’s application to the Department of Mineral Resources for a mining licence for the project.

The Reserves of 43.8 million tonnes are inclusive of, and not additional to, the Resource of 66.3 million tonnes.

Next Steps at Moabsvelden

Xceed is planning to undertake further studies to investigate potential underground mining in areas on the project site where easement and environmental considerations constrain open cast mining.

The company is aiming to begin offsite fabrication this year ahead of commissioning the mine and first feedstock in 2013.

Growing Portfolio

The maiden Reserves at Moabsvelden come hot on the heels of news Xceed has received South African Government approval for the acquisition of a 70% interest in each of the Roodepoort and Bankfontein thermal coal projects, located within a region that produces the majority of South Africa’s coal.

Increasing the potential of the projects is that the Roodepoort project straddles Universal Coal’s (ASX: UNV) 82.8 million tonne Roodekop project, while the Bankfontein project is located in the Ermelo coal field nearby Xstrata’s Spitzkop and Tselentis collieries.

Importantly, as Xceed advances towards thermal coal production from Moabsvelden in late 2013, these two new project acquisitions provide the company with more than a single project, it provides Xceed with a pipeline of potential coal targets.

With the increase in exploration activity the market cannot expect more news over the coming months from Xceed.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24632/xceed-resources-delivers-maiden-thermal-coal-reserve-for-moabsvelden-24632.html

Energy Ventures unveils preliminary uranium metallurgical results from Aurora deposit

Energy Ventures (ASX: EVE) continues to progress the Aurora uranium deposit which is located in Oregon, U.S., and has today delivered to the market a positive set of initial metallurgical results.

Aurora displays strong potential due to hosting a near surface, flat lying zone of higher grade mineralisation amenable to open pit mining.

Importantly, scrubbing and wet screening tests have demonstrated that the Aurora mineralisation can be separated into size fractions with distinctly different physical and mineralisation characteristics.

The test results show:

- Separation of approximately 30% of the sample as a hard, coarse material containing around 10% of total uranium.

- Scrubbing attrition resulting in around 55% of total uranium mineralisation reporting to sizes less than 2 mm and around 35% reporting to sizes less than 149 μm.

- Separation of fine mineralisation into clay and non‐clay fractions.

The significance of these results is:

- Potential for efficient removal of internal waste through scrubbing and screening with minimal uranium losses. This would allow bulk mining of the resource and upgrading of mineralisation prior to leaching.

- Removal of hard, coarse waste and low‐grade material should significantly reduce crushing and grinding costs, as well as reducing capital costs due to lower volumes requiring grinding.

- Separation of clay and non‐clay mineralisation will allow different leach processes for each ore type, with potential for improved reagent consumption and recoveries compared to bulk leach results from previous work.

The next step

The results allow Energy Ventures to now move to evaluating the leaching characteristics and uranium recovery of the separate screen fractions.

Additional diamond drill core collected during 2011 has now been delivered to Hazen Research and preparation of a composite sample has been completed, with results expected in the June quarter of 2012 - after which a decision will be made to undertake more detailed flow sheet development and feasibility studies.

Also at Aurora, an internal Scoping Study has been undertaken and a Pre-Feasibility study is anticipated by mid-2012.

Aurora: just one of a portfolio of projects
Energy Ventures has five uranium exploration and development projects in the U.S, with Aurora in Oregon and the nearby Virgin Valley project in Nevada, along with three projects in Colorado known as Maybell, Skull Creek and Coyote Basin.

Where the story gets even more interesting for the company, is that all of the projects have significant historical exploration and current or historical resources defined, which highlights the prospectivity and potential of the land holdings.

Another plus is established mine permitting regimes, along with supporting infrastructure.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24662/energy-ventures-unveils-preliminary-uranium-metallurgical-results-from-aurora-deposit-24662.html

Birimian Gold to announce capital raising details, granted trading halt

Birimian Gold (ASX: BGS) is focused on gold exploration in the highly prospective and resource rich West Africa region, and today the ASX granted the company a trading halt pending a capital raising announcement, with its shares placed in pre-open.

Birimian Gold has not yet indicated where the potential capital injection will be allocated, but the company earlier in the month announced a 12 kilometre long gold trend in Mali - which the company considers could be economic.

Results include the broad 46 metres at 0.48 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from 8 metres, which includes the higher grade zone of 12 metres at 1.00 g/t gold.

Other highlights were; 8 metres at 1.29g/t gold from 16 metres; and 16 metres at 0.56g/t gold from 28 metres.

Birimian Gold is set to move exploration of this major gold anomaly forward quickly, with a follow-up aircore drilling program planned to begin next month.

The halt will last until the earlier of an announcement being made to the market, or the opening of trade on Thursday 2 February.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24669/birimian-gold-to-announce-capital-raising-details-granted-trading-halt-24669.html

Gold One International given green light to transfer Megamine assets to Goliath Gold

Gold One International (ASX: GDO) and Goliath Gold Mining have received approval from the South African Department of Mineral Resources for the transfer of Gold One’s Megamine assets to Goliath Gold.

Goliath Gold, a JSE-listed and gold focused development company, was created through the reverse acquisition of White Water Resources by wholly owned Gold One subsidiary Gold One Africa.

The enlarged and renamed White Water Resources will house Gold One’s deeper level assets comprising a 12.65 million ounce Resource.

Gold One Africa will own at least 73.895% of Goliath Gold, unlocking around ZAR260 million (A$31.3 million) of value for the Megamine Assets on transfer to Goliath Gold.

The remaining conditions precedent to the acquisition are administrative in nature and are expected to be fulfilled shortly.

Gold One and Goliath Gold have agreed to further extend the deadline to satisfy the remaining conditions precedent from 31 January to 29 February.

Gold One Growth

Gold One is continuing to grow its surface business with the announcement of a partnership with Gold Fields (JSE: GFI, NYSE: GFI, NASDAQ: GFI, Dubai: GFI) to investigate the viability of concurrently reprocessing their combined surface tailings deposits in South Africa.

Gold One and Gold Fields currently operate mines in the West Rand, a region in South Africa’s Witwatersrand Basin with a long history of gold and uranium mining.

Under the agreement, the companies will jointly investigate the feasibility of establishing a joint venture into which both parties will contribute surface assets for retreatment.

These assets are expected to comprise in excess of 700 million tonnes and represent over 60% of the total tailings material in the region.

Earlier this month Gold One completed the US$250 million acquisition of Rand Uranium.

The acquisition of Rand Uranium’s mineral interests builds on the company’s flagship Modder East mine, some 30 kilometres from Johannesburg.

With the acquisition of Rand Uranium, Gold One could log overall gold production of 300,000-350,000 ounces of gold in 2013.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24668/gold-one-international-given-green-light-to-transfer-megamine-assets-to-goliath-gold--24668.html

Astra Resources Plc: iron ore potential identified at Philippine iron sands project

International diversified resources company, Astra Resources Plc (FWB Code: 9AR), has received a favourable report from the Cagayan River Construction & Development Corporation (CRCDC) on its Philippine iron sands project.

The report, commissioned by the CRCDC who is Astra’s joint venture partner for the project, identifies the iron ore potential of the immediate surroundings of the CRCDC dredging area in the Cagayan River Delta.

The area considered in the report is partly inland and extensively offshore, covering most of the northern shelf area of the Cagayan Province in the North Eastern part of Luzon in the Philippines.

Astra CEO Dr Jaydeep Biswas says the main material to be dredged contains magnetite, the principal iron bearing mineral, which is black in colour and is present within river sediments and offshore sands.

“Large offshore deposits of magnetite have accumulated from the discharge of the Cagayan River and other rivers that empty through the sea, with much of the deposits dating back through many geological eras,” Dr Biswas says.

“Magnetite is resistant to weathering and is therefore preserved through the geological ages in its primary form and composition.

“The highly magnetic nature of magnetite means it can be recovered with relative ease using magnetic separators, making it an economically attractive mineral to recover.”

A number of major offshore exploration programs have been conducted in the Cagayan River Delta and shelf area with samples from a 2009 program showing the approximate mineralogical composition of the iron sands being 75 per cent magnetite (including hematite/titanium) and 25 per cent rock forming minerals.

A second exploration program, which was undertaken just over two kilometres from the offshore dredge area, showed that the average content of the magnetic fraction is 46.2 per cent at a seabed sediment depth of one metre, increasing to an average of 49 per cent at depths of three and 5.5 metres.

The iron (Fe) content recovered from select samples of the magnetite concentrates ranged from 53.6 per cent to 67.45 per cent.

Astra Managing Director Silvana De Cianni says the inferred resources outlined in the shelf area support Astra’s belief that the potential economic grades iron present in the dredging area will enable Astra to turn the Philippine iron sands project into a significant export business.     

“The inferred estimate of magnetite-rich sand in surrounding areas using data from a previous offshore exploration program is about 12.98 billion tonnes, while magnetite-rich concentrate is about 4 billion tonnes,” Ms De Cianni says.

This estimate demonstrates the presence of a significant tonnage of magnetite-rich marine sand in the Cagayan River Delta and suggest there is significant potential for identifying additional magnetite-rich marine sand resources at further depths as well as laterally, which reflects positively on the vast potential of the dredging area granted to the CRCDC.

In preparation to implement its dredging contract, which was granted through the Provincial Government of Cagayan to assist in desilting the mouth of the Cagayan River Delta and its extension offshore, the CRCDC has actively prepared for the recovery of magnetite.

A concentrator plant has been positioned at its Port Irene area and concrete plans to transport and process the dredge material for magnetite have been made.

For the specific purpose of disposing the sand stone waste and residue and marketing the processed iron component of the sands, a separate subsidiary of Astra shall be incorporated in Hong Kong.

Astra Resources’ global portfolio includes gold interest in Southeast Asia, coal mines in Africa, iron ore in India and the Philippines, the production of the high-strength T-Steel technology in Hungary, and the provision of mining services housing in Rockhampton, Queensland.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24666/astra-resources-plc-iron-ore-potential-identified-at-philippine-iron-sands-project-24666.html

Sun Resources appoints non-executive director to the board

Sun Resources (ASX: SUR) has invited John Kenny to join the board as a non-executive director, effective from 1 March 2012.

Chairman Dr Wolf Martinick said, “We are pleased that Mr Kenny has joined the board, particularly as he is one of the vendors of the Delta Oil Project.

“Mr Kenny’s knowledge of the U.S. unconventional oil and gas exploration and production sector, and the network he has developed as a result of his involvement in the sector will assist Sun Resources to add value to the Delta Oil Project.”

Through his practise of corporate and mining law and investment banking, Kenny has advised a number of ASX-listed companies in the areas of equity and debt finance.

Kenny has been a director of several ASX-listed companies and is currently on the board of Gippsland Limited (ASX: GIP).

Sun Resources now controls a 100% working interest in a total of 6,803 acres of leases in the Delta Oil Project, which is situated along trend of a prolific oil and gas fairway in Texas.

The company will continue to work with the vendor to complete what appears to be a low risk acquisition of the target 10,000 acres, subject to completion of due diligence.

Announced in 2011, independent consulting firm Ralph E. Davis estimated unrisked 10 million barrels of net prospective oil Resources in one sand unit of the Delta Oil Project.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24664/sun-resources-appoints-non-executive-director-to-the-board-24664.html

Peninsula Energy meets another milestone for Lance uranium projects with early issue of RAIs

Peninsula Energy (ASX: PEN) is encouraged by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s (NRC) early issue of Requests for Additional Information (RAIs) to support its environmental and technical review of wholly owned subsidiary Strata Energy’s application for a Source and 11(e).2 Byproduct Material License.

Peninsula executive chairman Gus Simpson said, “We believe that the low number of RAIs and their early issuance are a further demonstration of the NRC’s proactive approach to the permitting process and to the quality of the application documents prepared by the Strata team.

“All in all it’s a credit to the parties involved”.

The RAIs were issued ahead of NRC’s schedule and were significantly less in number than have typically been expected.

This is believed to be due to the comprehensive nature of the original application submitted by Strata.

Early issuance of the RAIs marks another significant milestone in the overall process and a speedy response is expected to have a positive impact on the permitting schedule.

The Strata permitting team has anticipated the content of most RAIs and have already begun the work necessary to lodge detailed responses within a shortened time frame.

Earlier this month Strata was given the green light by the NRC to begin deep disposal well testing of subsurface conditions at the Lance uranium projects in Wyoming ahead of its original schedule. 

The NRC advised the company it considered the testing to be exploration, and drilling could begin without further approval.

Importantly, testing could see flow rates at the upper limits of expectation that would lead to significant capital expenditure reductions at the Lance Projects.

Construction and operation of up to five underground injection control Class 1 wells at the Lance Central Processing Plant site was approved by the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality in April 2011.

The NRC has confirmed that Strata can, upon the issue of the Source Material Licence, apply to have the test deep disposal well converted for operations.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24660/peninsula-energy-meets-another-milestone-for-lance-uranium-projects-with-early-issue-of-rais--24660.html

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Lachlan Star: Aggressive exploration delivers with more gold discoveries at CMD Mine

Lachlan Star (ASX: LSA, TSX: LSA) has been re-rated by the market with the company's shares rallying to $1.13 today, up from around $0.85 just two weeks ago - and there is good reason for the investor interest.

Not only does Lachlan Star continue to pour gold from the CMD Mine in Chile, the company's aggressive drilling campaign continues to discover gold at several deposits.

The latest highlights from the Tres Perlas Deposit include 9 metres at 6.4 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from 9 metres; and 10 metres at 2.15g/t gold from 20 metres.

Across at the Toro Deposit intersections include 18 metres at 1.14g/t gold from 60 metres; and 17 metres at 1.11g/t from 69 metres. At the Churrumata Deposit, 7 metres at 1.23g/t gold from 17 metres was discovered.

Declan Franzmann, managing director, commented that the aggressive exploration campaign started in 2011 continues unabated in 2012. "This investment will be realised in the 2012 mineral resource update, which will have a significant positive impact on life of mine planning for the CMD Gold Mine.”

Record 11,326 gold ounces poured in December quarter

During the 2011 December quarter 11,326 ounces of gold were poured by Lachlan Star at the CMD Mine, an increase of 10% over the previous quarter, and importantly 16,835 ounces of gold are stacked, an increase of 30% over the same period.

Another plus for Lachlan Star is a decrease of 8% for the total cost/tonne of ore at US$18.30/t.

The waste:ore ratio was maintained at 3.4:1 despite pre strip of the Chisperos pit. Excluding the Chisperos pre strip, strip ratio on other pits was reduced to 2.38:1 (compared to 3.2 previous quarter).

Lachlan Star is targeting to produce 75,000 ounces in 2012.

CMD Gold Mine - by the numbers

The CMD Mine currently hosts an Indicated Resource of 37.6 million tonnes at 0.6% for 725,000 gold ounces, along with 49.8 million tonnes at 0.6% for 923,000 gold ounces.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24626/lachlan-star-aggressive-exploration-delivers-with-more-gold-discoveries-at-cmd-mine-24626.html

Elementos extends high grade gold silver at the Santo Domingo project

Elementos (ASX: ELT) has extended the high grade gold structure at the Yvette prospect on the back of infill sampling.

The Yvette prospect is part of Elementos’ Santo Domingo Project in Argentina, which also includes the Divisoria gold-copper porphyry prospect.

Trenching on the Yvette Norte gold silver trend has indicated the presence of a new parallel, high grade gold silver structure under talus cover.

Infill sampling was carried out over a 700 metre long segment, and returned high grade gold and silver results along with lead, zinc and copper.

Highlights from rock chip sampling include:

- 20.8 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 82g/t silver over 1 metre;
- 46.2g/t gold and 541g/t silver over 0.5 metres; and
- 32.2g/t gold and 20g/t silver over 0.4 metres.

This sampling program shows the continuity of high grade gold and silver over the main north-south sub-vertical trend.

It has also identified a series of smaller parallel structures, between 3 and 20 metres from the main structure.

Significantly, vertical gradation has been identified from low grade gold-silver close to the surface to high grade gold-silver mineralisation at deeper levels.

Deep penetration geophysics will be carried out to test both the vertical and horizontal extents of the system.

With a strong spatial relationship between the Yvette structural system and the Divisoria porphyry environment at surface, Elementos has increased the potential size of the combined mineralised systems.

The company’s next steps at Yvette will depend on the geophysics from the Divisoria prospect.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24623/elementos-extends-high-grade-gold-silver-at-the-santo-domingo-project-24623.html

Ironbark Zinc invites former Jabiru Metals MD to fill board seat

Ironbark Zinc (ASX: IBG) has appointed Gary Comb to the Board of Ironbark as a non-executive director.

Comb was recently the managing director of Jabiru Metals where he was successful in taking the Jaguar base metal project into production, with the commissioning of the mine and processing plant taking place during the global financial crisis.

Jabiru became a bottom quartile cost producer and subsequently was subject to a A$532 million takeover in early 2011.

Comb was also previously chief executive officer of BGC Contracting, the mining contracting arm of Western Australian construction group BGC. He is currently a director of Zenith Minerals.

Comb’s 25 years in the Australian mining industry will strengthen Ironbark’s board as it works towards first production at the Citronen Base Metal Project in Greenland in 2014.

The company recently increased the grade and tonnes of mineralisation at the project following a Resource upgrade.

Ironbark announced a 23% increase in grade for the underground optimised mineral inventory, to 39.1 million tonnes at 6.18% zinc for 2.4 million tonnes of contained zinc metal, and 0.53% lead.

This comes hot on the heels of a 53% increase in Measured and Indicated Resources at Citronen, announced on January 9.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24622/ironbark-zinc-invites-former-jabiru-metals-md-to-fill-board-seat--24622.html

TNG Limited poised to begin construction of pilot plant at Mount Peak

TNG Limited (ASX: TNG) is moving to the next key phase of the metallurgical testwork program for its flagship Mount Peake Iron-Vanadium-Titanium Project in the Northern Territory with construction of a pilot plant scheduled to start at the end of January.

The modular pilot plant will be assembled to test the proprietary TIVAN™ solvent extraction process, developed jointly by TNG and its partner METS.

The pilot plant will be assembled at the ALS-AMMTEC laboratory in Perth using existing solvent extraction equipment.

Operation and testing of the pilot plant is scheduled to begin in March, providing a definitive test of the commercial potential of the TIVAN™ process to produce a high purity aqueous vanadium solution leading to a vanadium pentoxide product of commercial grade.

Final results are expected by the end of the June quarter of 2012.

Further testwork to confirm the iron and titanium grade products is scheduled for early in the June quarter.

The TIVAN™ process can extract commercial high grade quantities of vanadium and iron from the Mount Peake mineralisation and also, importantly, has the potential to be applied to other vanadium deposits globally.

The upcoming testwork programs represent key inputs to the Mount Peake Project’s Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS), which is scheduled to begin in the current March quarter.

Metallurgical Testwork

Optimisation testwork has been completed for the High Pressure Grinding Rolls (HPGR), providing encouraging results and indicating lower than expected specific power requirements.

Dry and wet Low Intensity Magnetic Separation (LIMS) magnetic concentrate option testing on the HPGR fines has been completed indicating lower mass pull but higher grades on the preferred wet LIMS magnetic concentrate option.

Leach tests on the magnetic concentrate are on track with ore zone, acid concentration and temperature tests completed, and confirming expected extractions.

Bulk leach test work on a 90 kilogram magnetic concentrate sample is scheduled for February and will be used as feed solution for the pilot plant operational and testing phase.

De-Risking Mount Peake

The testwork programs and DFS for Mount Peake form part of TNG’s strategic alliance with the East China Mineral Exploration & Development Bureau (ECE).

TNG last week completed the first stage of its previously announced A$13.4 million transaction with ECE, which attracted an initial $6.6 million capital injection from Ao-Zhong International Mineral Resources, a subsidiary of the privately owned Chinese company. 

With a JORC Resource inventory of more than 70% in the Indicated category, and moving from a Scoping Study accuracy of +/-50% to a Pre-Feasibility Study of +/-25% accuracy, and securing ECE to support and develop the project, TNG has significantly de-risked the project moving forward.

Interim PFS results demonstrate the potential for net annual cash flows of $151.3 million over a mine life of more than 17 years and an internal rate of return of 25.7% from the proposed world-scale Mount Peake Iron-Vanadium-Titanium Project.

The PFS points to a 2.5 million tonne per annum operation expanding to 5 million tonnes per annum  after four years and an average annual production of 14,200 tonnes per annum vanadium oxide, 379,000 tonnes per annum titanium dioxide and 1.2 million tonnes iron.

TNG is valued at five times its current share price by a U.K. broker. Earlier this month the company attracted a target price of A$0.45, well above its last traded share price of $0.085.

The broker maintained its buy recommendation for TNG given the company’s strong financial position and momentum at key projects. The current discount in TNG shares is considered to be excessive.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24616/tng-limited-poised-to-begin-construction-of-pilot-plant-at-mount-peak--24616.html

Thor Mining lifts Molyhil tungsten and molybdenum Resource; Reserve upgrade anticipated

Thor Mining (ASX: THR) has lifted the tonnage at the Molyhil Tungsten and Molybdenum Project by 25% to 4.7 million tonnes, as the company works towards a Feasibility Study.
With the tonnage increase, contained tungsten has grown 10% to greater than 13,100 tonnes, while contained molybdenum has increased 46% to more than 10,400 tonnes.
An updated ore Reserve and mining plan are due in February 2012, based on results from 12,839 metres of reverse circulation drilling, 1,816 metres of diamond drilling and three underground exploration shafts and cross cuts.

Chairman Mick Billing told Proactive Investors the nature of the tungsten intersected could allow for early cash flow.

“The grades near surface are very high tungsten grades indeed, and that suggests to us that we’ll get a very quick pay back on the capital for the project,” Billing said.

This would also depend on the mining plan and Feasibility Study.

In addition, Billing told Proactive Investors that a mine life increase could be on the cards.

“The consistency of the deposit and the grade of the deposit probably allows us to continue to mine the operation for longer than previously planned, so instead of it being a 3.5 to 5 year mine life operation we might get an extra couple of years out of that and that’s an outstanding outcome.”

Mining consultancy Runge Limited prepared the Resource update, and is expected to release a Reserve upgrade for Molyhil next month, along with an updated Feasibility Study.

“We are relatively confident we’ll have that out before the end of February, and while we’re doing that we’re working with a bunch of people to try and secure the agreement for the concentrate so we can sell this stuff,” Billing said.

In addition, Proteus EPCM Engineers is preparing an optimisation addendum to the previous capital and operating cost estimates to reflect the recently announced process improvements.

These improvements lifted the projected metallurgical recovery of tungsten for Molyhil to 75%, up from the previous estimate of 67%.

Of the tungsten in this stream, 30% should be recoverable at relatively low cost.

Timeline to mining

Following the completion of the Feasibility Study, Thor will need to secure offtake agreements and finance for Molyhil before the company will move to tender for design, construct and EPCM work.

Billing said Thor could be potentially turning the first sod at Molyhil early in the second half of this year.

“If we can commence development early in the second half of this year, and at this stage we’re relatively optimistic that we can, then there’s a construction period of roughly 12 months,” Billing told Proactive Investors today.

“We should be in production in the second half of 2013.”

About Molyhil

Located in the Northern Territory, Thor’s wholly owned Molyhil project comprises two adjacent outcropping iron rich skarn bodies, marginal to a granite intrusion, containing scheelite (tungsten) and molybdenite mineralisation.

The resource area covers 250 metres of strike and has 410 metres of vertical extent.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24614/thor-mining-lifts-molyhil-tungsten-and-molybdenum-resource-reserve-upgrade-anticipated-24614.html

Xceed Resources expands portfolio with highly prospective South African thermal coal projects

Xceed Resources (ASX: XCD) has received South African Government approval for the acquisition of a 70% interest in each of the Roodepoort and Bankfontein thermal coal projects, located within a region that produces the majority of South Africa’s coal.

Increasing the potential of the projects is that the Roodepoort project straddles Universal Coal’s (ASX: UNV) 82.8 million tonne Roodekop project.

Xceed Resources managing director Ian Culbert told Proactive Investors today that Universal is drilling on the boundary to the Roodepoort project with coal known to extend into the licence, as has been proven with drilling by Xceed.

“I know that we’re looking at something not dissimilar to Roodekop in terms of a mixture of export quality coal and domestic coal and it will be an open cut operation,” he said.

Drilling undertaken by Xceed on these projects as part of the company’s due diligence confirms potential for export grade resources to be developed.

Significantly, both the Roodepoort and Bankfontein thermal coal projects can be developed as open cut operations, improving the economics of the projects.

“The acquisition of these strategically located projects greatly increases our presence on the Witbank/Ermelo coal fields and provides us with a good pipeline of new exploration targets which will be advanced to follow on the development of the company’s Moabsvelden Thermal Coal Project,” Culbert said.

“Our recent drilling on Roodepoort and Bankfontein confirm the presence of near surface, high grade coal which will now become the focus of further drilling campaigns aimed at Resource definition.”


The Roodepoort project is situated in the middle of the Witbank coal field and is nearby the Matla and Kriel coal fired power stations.

Xceed drilled a total of four diamond holes on the project during the quarter as part of its due diligence investigation.

These holes correlated well with the historical holes they were intended to twin and suggest at this stage that open cast resources with a combination of export grade as well as domestic grade coal may potentially be developed through further drilling and testwork.

The area tested by the due diligence drilling is in the eastern half of the project area, adjacent to the Roodekop project, suggesting that there is a continuation of the same coal formations from the one project to the next.

Geological consultant Gemecs have recommended that Xceed undertake a drilling program of 35 shallow holes with an average depth of 35 metres to define possible Resources.


The Bankfontein project is located in the Ermelo coal field nearby Xstrata’s Spitzkop and Tselentis collieries.

This is an area where players like Coal of Africa and Continental Coal (ASX: CCC) are currently focused.

“The type of coal there is quite different, it is very high grade, it tends to be narrower and deeper,” Culbert said.

Xceed drilled a total of four diamond holes on the property during the quarter. Correlation with historical drilling was generally poor, however this was not unexpected as historical drilling was carried out by several different parties over a lengthy period.

Drilling undertaken by Xceed, however, indicated that there is potential to firstly develop some open cast resources and secondly seam thicknesses may support underground mining off the pit high wall.

This is significantly more economic than having just an underground operation as it is prohibitively expensive to develop underground shafts.

Culbert said it is more economic to begin with an open pit operation, where you are extracting coal as you develop the operation, and then drive in horizontally off the exposed surface face into an underground operation. 

“This is the target we we’re looking for and our drilling indicates that we have the potential to do that,” he said.

Acquisition Terms

During the December 2011 quarter Xceed executed definitive agreements with Hampfuna Mining & Exploration to acquire the right to purchase a 70% equity interest in each of the Roodepoort and Bankfontein coal projects.

Xceed will settle the deal through a combination of project development expenditure and vendor payments to be made when certain milestones – namely, Resource definition, mining rights and the start of mining – are achieved.

The company has now satisfied the two substantive conditions of Ministerial approval of the transaction and completion of due diligence and will go ahead with the acquisitions.

Forward Plan

Xceed’s priority will be Roodepoort where it will begin a drilling campaign in the next couple of weeks.

The company then plans to move onto Bankfontein with the aim of defining a JORC Resource for both projects in the next four to six months.

Cash-backed Coal Developer

Xceed has received a buy recommendation from a U.K. broker and a target price of A$0.22, more than double the last traded price of $0.10.

The company is working towards bringing its flagship Moabsvelden thermal coal project into production by late 2013 producing 3 million tonnes per annum run of mine coal for sale to the domestic, industrial and export markets in South Africa.

Importantly, as it advances towards this goal, these two new project acquisitions provide Xceed with more than a single project, it provides the company with a pipeline of potential coal targets.

With the increase in exploration activity the market cannot expect more news over the coming months from Xceed.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24621/xceed-resources-expands-portfolio-with-highly-prospective-south-african-thermal-coal-projects--24621.html

ABM Resources A$15.1m placement well supported, high grade gold discoveries to be advanced

ABM Resources (ASX: ABU) has received a major vote of confidence in the company's emerging gold projects, with a $15.125 million share placement being well supported by institutional and sophisticated investors in Australia and internationally.

The placement comprised 275 million shares at $0.055, with Darren Holden, managing director, commenting on the support for the placement:

“The board of directors of ABM is very pleased with the response to this placement, which received particularly strong support. ABM Resources welcomes a number of new institutional shareholders to its register.

"The completion of this capital raising will see the company in a very strong financial position, and planning is currently underway to deploy the capital to advance our green-fields as well as our more advanced projects, including detailed work on the economics of the high grade Old Pirate Gold discovery.”

ABM Resources has recently discovered some very high grade gold at the Old Pirate prospect, which is hosted within the company's 1.67 million ounce Twin Bonanza Gold Camp Project in the Northern Territory.

Trenching results from the prospect when combined total a strike length of 582 metres and a weighted average of 23.98 grams per tonne gold.


With a resource update planned for delivery in the March quarter of 2012, ongoing exploration successes highlight the potential for ABM Resources to push past the milestone 2 million ounces gold mark in the short term.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24612/abm-resources-a151m-placement-well-supported-high-grade-gold-discoveries-to-be-advanced-24612.html

Central Petroleum continues success at Surprise 1 with positive initial engineering results

Central Petroleum (ASX: CTP) has received positive initial results from an engineering report by RPS Energy that indicate the Surprise-1 Re-entry H well, in the Amadeus Basin, could access stock tank oil initially in place (STOIIP) of between 0.5 and 2 million barrels in an area proximal to the well.

Further defining the well’s potential is that no apparent boundaries were identified during the analysis of the pressure transient data.

However, no further conclusions regarding the possible range of STOIIP volumes in the entire Surprise structure of 8 square kilometres can be made until all available seismic, geological and geophysical data has been integrated and analysed.

RPS based their calculations on a 105 metre section of the horizontal well bore placed in the lower half of an 8 metre thick sandstone reservoir section with an average permeability of 50 milliDarcies and a vertical to horizontal permeability ratio of 10%.

From the estimated reservoir pressure and the quasi-stable flowing BHP/rate, a productivity index of 0.65 barrels of oil per day/psi can be calculated.

Even though this is a transient productivity index and will decrease until reaching pseudo-steady state, the Inflow Performance Relationship curve suggests significant production increase potential upon greater draw-downs via artificial lift and possibly pressure maintenance in the medium to long term.

Sweet Success

Central achieved significant oil flows to surface during initial flow testing at the Surprise-1 Re-entry H well, the first significant onshore oil flow in the Northern Territory in nearly 50 years.

Initial flow testing of the Surprise-1 Re-entry H well produced a final stable flow rate of about 400 barrels of oil per day of sweet light crude with an API Gravity averaging 400.

As a result of the ongoing success of the well, a broker has reaffirmed its strong buy recommendation for Central and assigned a 12 month target price of $0.32 per share, well above the company’s last traded share price of $0.061 – which notably was up 1.67% higher on today’s news.

Strong oil flows from the Surprise-1 Re-entry H well significantly lowers the risk associated with the company’s initial projects. 

Next Steps

Central is planning an extended production test of the well and a sales contract for any oil produced, with work expected to begin in April.

The company is also considering a second horizontal well prior to a 3D seismic survey of the Surprise structure and associated prospects and leads.

This is subject to further analysis of all data available which may result in a decision to postpone further drilling until a 3D survey can be conducted and the results of the extended production test of Surprise-1 Re-entry H are available.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24611/central-petroleum-continues-success-at-surprise-1-with-positive-initial-engineering-results--24611.html

Papillon Resources aims for maiden gold Resource at Fekola by mid 2012

Papillon Resources (ASX: PIR) is targeting a maiden gold JORC Resource by mid-2012 from the Fekola project, with the initial diamond drilling results providing a major boost to the project due to the broad nature of the gold intersections.
The news flow for the company is set to increase in the short term, with the reported results today from just the first 1000 metres of a 15,000 metre diamond campaign, with 3000 metres having been completed so far.

Results from the first holes have returned a number of positive assays, confirming and extending on results from previous reverse circulation drilling.

A number of diamond holes confirmed the gold mineralisation identified by reverse circulation drilling, with results including:

- 86 metres at 6.17 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from 181.2 metres, including 51 metres at 9.17g/t gold;
- 94 metres at 4.63g/t gold from 178.7 metres; and
- 41.9 metres at 3.21g/t gold from 229.2 metres.

In addition, step out reverse circulation drilling at Fekola returned:

- 9 metres at 4.88g/t gold from 54 metres;
- 20 metres at 3.03g/t gold from 41 metres; and
- 17 metres at 2.51g/t gold from 75 metres.

The initial diamond results strengthen Papillon’s understanding of the geological structures at Fekola, and underline the project’s potential as a strong mineralisation system.

Managing director Alan Campbell told Proactive Investors today that the company plans to ramp up activity at Fekola.

"We have three diamond rigs active on site, and we are looking to increase this number, along with a reverse circulation rig. Papillon will conduct a continuous drilling campaign over the next five or six months,” Campbell said.

Fekola strategically located in 22Moz province
Papillon's Fekola Project is located in the same corridor as the Mali West regional gold province, which has more than 22 million ounces of gold within 60 kilometres.
Other projects in the vicinity include Randgold Resource's (LON:RRS) 11.5 million ounce Loulo project and AngloGold Ashanti's (NYSE: AU) 13.1 million ounce Sadiola project.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24610/papillon-resources-aims-for-maiden-gold-resource-at-fekola-by-mid-2012-24610.html

Xceed Resources: A cash backed coal developer worth double says Old Park Lane

Xceed Resources (ASX: XCD) has received a buy recommendation from the UK based Old Park Lane Capital, with a target price of $0.22. This target is more than double the last traded price of $0.10.

The following is an extract from the report.


Xceed Resources Ltd is an emerging coal explorer and developer with a portfolio of projects located in South Africa. Xceed is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange under the ticker ASX: XCD.

Xceed plans to bring its flagship Moabsvelden thermal coal project into production by late 2013 producing 3Mtpa ROM coal for sale to the domestic, industrial and export markets in South Africa. The company’s South African projects are fully BEE compliant.

· Low cost transition to producer. A modest capital expenditure plan and industry competitive operating costs should see Xceed rise to the ranks of producer with a robust coal operation. Moabsvelden is a long life (66Mt JORC resource, 95% Measured), low-strip ratio, open pit operation which our modelling demonstrates to be highly profitable.

· Not dependent on Richard’s Bay port allocation. As well as producing local power station coal, Xceed has identified strong demand in the industrial market and from 3rd party exporters at competitive mine-gate coal pricing vs. export sales on a FOB basis, negating the need to secure allocation at RBCT, which is a major obstacle for many operators.

Moabsvelden is located much closer to the industrial market customers than the majority of other operating coal mines.

· Cashed up and ready to go. With A$9.5m cash in the bank and no debt, Xceed is in a strong financial position, being fully funded through to the start of construction at Moabsvelden in late 2012. No further resource drilling is required.

· Deeply discounted coal play. Our analysis indicates that Xceed is trading at a significant discount on an EV/t basis compared to its peers in the Southern African coal sector. In part this reflects development and funding risk, but also that XCD is at present, a single project developer. We expect the company to re-rate as key hurdles are achieved.

· Take-over target. With Moabsvelden racing towards production and XCD’s strong cash position we view the company as an attractive take-over target. Our analysis of XCD and recent coal sector M&A transactions, suggests that a current takeout value for XCD should be in excess of A$0.20/sh.

If XCD is successful in obtaining permits, off-take and funding we expect the stock to command multiples as a compelling target within a consolidation of the South African coal space.

· Compelling valuation. Our NAV for Xceed Resources is A$49m or A$0.35 per share fully diluted, indicating that the company is trading at a significant discount with a current P/NAV of 0.32. We set our target price at A$0.22/sh after adjusting our NAV for financing and development risk. We view this target price as conservative.

· Key Catalysts. Moabsvelden feasibility (March 2012), key permits, off-take and financing (in next 12 months) We initiate coverage on Xceed Resources Ltd with a BUY recommendation and a price target of A$0.22/sh. Our valuation suggests material upside if Xceed is successful in developing Moabsvelden on-time and according to current plans.

Valuation summary:

Net asset value - A$0.35 per share

Our net asset valuation (NAV) for Xceed Resources is A$49m or A$0.35 per share, fully diluted. This is based on a discounted cash flow valuation of the company’s primary project, Moabsvelden, using a 12% discount rate.

Our base case model is more conservative than management estimates and in particular we have used higher capex inputs and assume a 6-month delay to the start-up of first production at Moabsvelden. Our valuation implies that Xceed is currently trading at a P/NAV discount of 0.32, presenting a compelling opportunity for capital growth against the current share price.

Target price – A$0.22 per share

We set our target price at A$0.22/sh. We derive our target price from our base case NAV of A$0.35 and then make a series of adjustments for the required equity financing to produce an adjusted postfinancing NAV (A$0.29), which after adjustment for development risk, drives our target price.

We assume that Xceed will need to raise A$19m in equity based on a 60:40 debt to equity split applied to our total funding assumption of ZAR 330m including working capital and rehab costs. Our capital cost assumption is conservatively 25% higher than management estimates.

We assume the new equity is raised at A$0.20 per share at a premium to the current share price and factor in the dilution as a result of the issue of 95m shares. We assume the equity raise in mid-2013, and believe that by this point, Xceed’s share price should have benefited from any de-risking as a result of the company meeting development hurdles, and thus we deem a raise at 20¢ achievable.

Finally we apply an NAV multiple of 0.75 to reflect development, funding, timeline and other risks to derive our final price target of A$0.22. Our target price implies a 97% return to the current share price.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24607/xceed-resources-a-cash-backed-coal-developer-worth-double-says-old-park-lane-24607.html

Globe Metals & Mining extends rare earth elements strike at Mount Muambe in Mozambique

Globe Metals & Mining (ASX: GBE) has yet again extended the rare earth elements strike zone at the evolving Mount Muambe project in Mozambique.

The strike has now been extended to over 600 metres south of main fluorite / rare earth element zone, with the latest drilling highlights including:

Southern extension drilling; 12 metres at 17.1% fluorite from 1 metre, including 4 metres at 26.8% fluorite; and 14 metres at 0.7% TREO with 336ppm Dy2O3 from 13 metres.

Infill drilling on the Main Zone delivered; 5 metres at 50.0% fluorite from 8 metres; and 18 metres at 40.9% fluorite from 15 metres, including 14 metres at 48.4% fluorite.

Globe Metals said that the new fluorite results and additional infill drilling from the 2011 drilling program have further strengthened the company's confidence in a significant zone of contiguous fluorite mineralisation at the project’s main zone.

The impact from the recent results is that they continue to support a model of fluorite dominantly hosted in sheets of fenite above a larger carbonatite body containing both light rare earth oxide and heavy rare earth oxide enriched mineralisation.

News flow pending; JORC Resource
The progress at the project during 2011 has positioned Globe Metals to be able to deliver a fluorite JORC Resource in the March quarter of 2012.

There are also drilling results pending within weeks, as the 2011 reverse circulation program for 9400 metres still has over 4000 metres of assays to be announced.

Globe Metals: $39.2 million cash bounty

Globe Metals is in an enviable position of having $39.2 million cash in the bank at the end of 2011, with the well funded company announcing a share buy back just last week.

Globe's cash position equates to a cash backing of $0.18 per share, and what will be of interest to investors is the company's shares last changed hands at $0.175.

Subject to approval of ASIC, ASX and FIRB, (shareholders approval not required), the on-market buy-back is for up to 10.08 million shares, which represents around 5% of the issued capital, at no more than $0.23 per share.

Mark Sumich, managing director, commented at the time: “Globe’s current share price does not reflect its intrinsic value, let alone its cash backing.

"Accordingly, given our strong cash position and the relatively small amount of cash required to undertake the buy back, the board considers this to be a very appropriate use of our funds.”

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24604/globe-metals-mining-extends-rare-earth-elements-strike-at-mount-muambe-in-mozambique-24604.html

African Energy Resources bulks up thermal coal sampling as large scale testing draws nearer

African Energy Resources (ASX: AFR) is drawing close completing the excavation of a bulk sample of coal at the Sese Thermal Coal Project, with large scale testing to follow.

The Sese project, in northeast Botswana, has an initial JORC Resource of 2.73 billion tonnes of coal. A Bankable Feasibility Study and Environmental Impact Assessment are underway to evaluate a mining operation of up to 5 million tonnes per annum of coal.

About 15,000 tonnes of coal will be stockpiled, from both the upper and lower sections of the Sese Main Seam, for the bulk sample.

Coal from the bulk sample will be used for a series of large scale tests, including:

- Export trials to test the capacity and freight tariffs using the existing rail/port infrastructure
- Combustion tests for power station boilers to assist negotiations of coal sales agreements to power station customers
- Confirmation of the washing yields derived from previous testing of slimline drill core samples. This will confirm the product specification ranges of washed coal for sale
- An assessment of the coal’s suitability for coal to liquids processing which if favourable will be followed by a large scale test programme utilising 500 tonnes or more coal
- Samples of coal from the bulk sample will be made available to potential industrial customers to undertake their own testwork.

Other testwork to be carried out will be determined by the Bankable Feasibility Study.

A 60 tonne batch of coal has been sent to a processing facility in South Africa for processing.

The Sese project includes one prospecting licence and a number of prospecting licence applications, close to rail, road and power infrastructure.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24605/african-energy-resources-bulks-up-thermal-coal-sampling-as-large-scale-testing-draws-nearer-24605.html

Legacy Iron Ore in advanced negotiations to secure $200m line of credit

Legacy Iron Ore (ASX: LCY) is in advanced discussions to secure a monster $200 million line of credit to fund mine development at Mt Bevan as well as acquisitions.

Due diligence is underway by Legacy to finalise negotiations on Minemakers' (ASX: MAK) Wonarah phosphate project and Atlas Mining's (ASX: AGO) Ridley iron ore project.

The Convertible Securities Agreement with SpringTree Global Investors LLC has now been cancelled.

All new Australian projects proposed to be acquired will be developed through Legacy. These may be made through a joint venture agreement, partial or full acquisition.

Legacy disclosed it is also running a pen over Coking/Thermal Coal projects.


With this announcement, Legacy is looking beyond the development of Mt Bevan, itself a sizeable undertaking.  However, with the backing of India's NMDC, has propelled Legacy into a new league as well as value adding for Legacy holders.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24603/legacy-iron-ore-in-advanced-negotiations-to-secure-200m-line-of-credit-24603.html

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Azure Minerals’ JV partner JOGMEC increases exploration budget for El Tecolote to US$2.27m

Azure Minerals (ASX: AZS) has recommenced diamond drilling at its wholly owned El Tecolote Project in Mexico with an increased exploration budget from its joint venture partner, Japanese Government organisation Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC).

Following the evaluation of positive results received to date, JOGMEC has increased its 2011-12 total budget to US$2.27 million to include an additional 1,000 metres of diamond drilling within the current stage of the El Tecolote exploration program.

Situated between the company’s San Eduardo and La Tortuga Projects, El Tecolote covers 178 square kilometres of land containing abundant evidence of base metal mineralisation with potential for both porphyry copper and skarn copper-zinc-silver deposits.

The El Tecolote Mine – which previously produced 1.4 million tonnes at 1.9% copper, 7% zinc and 47 grams per tonne silver – closed in 1984 due low commodity prices, with unmined copper and zinc mineralisation remaining around the old mine workings.

An intensive US$1.5 million exploration program has identified several new targets, including Reyna del Cobre (skarn), extensions of the El Tecolote Mine (skarn) and several nearby porphyry copper prospects, all of which will be tested by the increased 4,000 metre drilling program.

To enable this program to be completed by March, Azure has mobilised a second drill rig to site.


JOGMEC manages Japan's stockpiling of oil, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and rare metals, including the construction of national LPG stockpiling bases.

Under the terms of the joint venture, JOGMEC will spend US$5 million on exploration over three years for a 51% interest in El Tecolote, and can earn an additional 19% stake by spending a further US$8 million during the following three years, which would increase the interest to 70%.

Importantly, these funds not only ramp up exploration at the highly prospective El Tecolote Project, but provide a huge vote of confidence for Azure.

Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/24590/azure-minerals-jv-partner-jogmec-increases-exploration-budget-for-el-tecolote-to-us227m--24590.html