Kimberley Rare Earths (ASX: KRE) has identified multiple heavy rare earth oxide (HREO) exploration targets at its 40%-owned Malilongue Project in Mozambique.
Strong comparisons have been drawn between the Malilongue project and Quest Rare Minerals’ (TSX-V: QRM) Strange Lake pegmatite-hosted deposit in northern Quebec, which hosts an Indicated Resource of 51 million tonnes at 1.16% total rare earth oxides (TREO) within a total Inferred Resource of 230 million tonnes at 1% TREO.
General manager – exploration Geoff Collis told Proactive Investors today Kimberley Rare Earths is highly confident of defining a heavy rare earth deposit at Malilongue.
“The similarities with Strange Lake are quite remarkable and geologically it looks very similar,” he said. “All indications are at the moment that we may be onto the same kind of thing.”
Managing director Tim Dobson said Malilongue has already revealed surface mineralisation with significant xenotime-hosted critical heavy rare earth oxides.
“The recently acquired airborne geophysical and satellite data have considerably enhanced our views on the potential for Malilongue to host significant heavy rare earth deposits,” he said.
“We are particularly excited by the Vundu prospect, which has never previously been explored for any minerals, let alone rare earths. We plan to mobilise field crews as soon as weather permits.”
The largest and highest priority target has been named the Vundu prospect and measures 3 kilometres in strike with total count activity levels that peak at eight times background.
The size and location of this anomaly are considered geologically significant being located on the margins of the intrusion where pegmatite-hosted HREO mineralisation is expected to occur.
No previous exploration has been conducted over this area. Kimberley Rare Earths is now planning to conduct ground radiometric surveys, soil geochemistry and geological mapping programs to define targets for reverse circulation drill testing.
This is expected to begin in March, following the current wet season.
High resolution aeromagnetic/radiometric data flown in 2008 by Kimberley Rare Earths’ joint venture partner Great Western Mining has been acquired and reprocessed to reveal considerable HREO potential within the project tenure.
A circular Malilongue granite intrusion was identified which appears to demonstrate significant internal magnetic zonation. This zonation may be a factor in targeting further HREO exploration.
Landsat and ASTER satellite thermal emission and reflectance data were acquired over the project area and manipulated in an attempt to enhance various alteration products potentially associated with pegmatite emplacement.
Strong vegetation cover over most of the project area resulted in a subdued response to many of the alteration ratios, however a marked vegetation anomaly was detected along the northern margins of the granite intrusion and coincident with the Vundu radiometric anomaly in particular.
Collis said Kimberley Rare Earths aims to begin drilling at Malilongue before mid-year, weather permitting.
“If we get some really good hits in the first drilling phase, which hopefully will be around about June, then we’ll be straight into resource drilling after that,” he said.
Impressive historical data
No doubt attracting Kimberley Rare Earths to the Mozambique domiciled project is the historical data, which includes rock chip samples assaying over 20% TREO.
Added to this is concentrates from 38 separate pits located throughout the pegmatite field sampled by the current owner, which have averaged over 1000 parts per million TREO with 55% being light rare earth oxides, 25% HREO and 20% yttrium oxide.
A sample extracted from the eluvial beds was subjected to mineralogical examination by a scanning electron microscope and found to comprise major xenotime and minor monazite and zircon.
In addition to yttrium, the xenotime shows appreciable dysprosium and erbium.
Under the farm-in agreement made with Great Western Mining, a gemstone mining company incorporated in Mozambique, Kimberley Rare Earths can earn up to a 90% interest in the Malilongue project.
Malilongue is just one of a number of acquisitions Kimberley Rare Earths has been considering.
Dobson also told Proactive Investors previously Kimberley Rare Earths is assessing somewhere between five and 10 potential heavy and light rare earths project acquisitions, both in Australia and overseas.
At the end of the December quarter Kimberley Rare Earths held cash reserves of A$13.7 million, with a market cap of just $10 million.
Originally published at: http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/25441/kimberley-rare-earths-discovers-large-heavy-rare-earth-prospect-at-malilongue-in-mozambique--25441.html