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KANGANKUNDE RARE EARTHS RESOURCE ESTIMATE UPDATED

May 23, 2024 / Marcel Chimwala
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Lindian Country Manager Chrispin Ngwena briefing Minister of Mining Hon. Monica Chang’anamuno on progress of the project
  • Resource now among world’s largest and most strategically significant deposits
  • Mineralisation remains uniquely non-radioactive

 

ASX-listed Lindian Resources says it has defined an Indicated Category Resource of 61 million tonnes @ 2.43% Total Rare Earth Ore (0.5% TREO cutoff grade) within an updated Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) of 261 million tonnes grading 2.14% TREO for its Kangankunde Rare Earths Project in Balaka.

The MRE update follows the Phase 3 infill drilling program completed in the third quarter of 2023, which added 45 drill holes for 4,886 metres of drilling.

CEO for Lindian Alistair Stephens says in a Press Statement that the Indicated Resource includes a higher-grade component of 25 million tonnes grading 3.26% TREO (2.5% TREO cutoff grade) and contains 300,000 tonnes of neodymium-praseodymium (NdPr) with NdPr ratio averaging 20.2% of TREO.

Stephens says the higher-grade component of the Indicated Resource will be significant for the Stage 1 Feasibility Study to be published this quarter.

“The Indicated portion of the MRE is an excellent outcome and exceeds our expectations in terms of tonnage and grade, particularly when taking into account the higher grade 25 million tonne component which likely underpins multiple years of production under our Stage 1 development plan,” he says.

Lindian’s Executive Chairman Asimwe Kabunga comments that “Lindian is pleased to deliver another key milestone central to its near-term goal of bringing the fully permitted Kangankunde project into production and establishing the world class project as a dependable long-term supplier of rare earths concentrate to global markets. “

“This updated MRE reaffirms the project’s status as a top tier asset that will deliver material benefits to Malawi, the local community, key stakeholders and our shareholders. Other milestones to be reported shortly will reinforce Kangankunde’s strategic value,” says Kabunga.

The resource estimation at Kangankunde utilised multi-element relationships from rock chemistry and rare earth mineralisation to define six domains within the overall carbonatite intrusion. These domains were assessed against geological understanding and field observations from surface mapping and drill core and were considered appropriate representations of the mineralisation distribution.

Grade tonnage curve analysis of the resource shows the robustness of grade continuity in the resource with a reduction in tonnes and increase in grade with increasing cut-off.

Mineral Tenement and Land Tenure Status

The Kangankunde Rare Earths Project is located in Balaka District in southern Malawi, 90 km north of the commercial city of Blantyre. The mineral tenements include a Medium Scale Mining Licence which is surrounded by an Exploration Licence.  The Exploration and Mining Licences have an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Licence issued under the Malawi Environmental Management Act No. 19 of 2017. Both licences are in good standing with no known impediments.

Geology

The Kangankunde Hill rises to a height of up to 200 m above the surrounding plain. The deposit contains a central zone of carbonatite rocks passing outwards to a series of zones of altered breccias of varying composition of carbonatite and wall rock clasts in a carbonatite matrix, and ultimately into unaltered gneiss host rock. Similar to many rare earth deposits, the main rare earth containing mineral in the deposit is monazite.

Estimation domaining utilised multi-element relationships from minor rock chemistry and rare earth mineralisation to define five domains within the overall carbonatite limits. These domains were assessed against geological understanding and field observations from surface mapping and drill core and were considered appropriate representations of the mineralisation distribution. Leapfrog was utilised to build mineralisation domain wireframes and to code sample intervals with the applicable domain.

Drilling Techniques and Hole Spacing

Drilling completed at the Kangankunde Rare Earths Project and used to support the MRE includes 12 diamond core (DD) holes totaling 2,387.4 metres, 117 reverse circulation (RC) holes totaling 16,424 metres, and eight RC holes with diamond core tails (RCD) totaling 3,080.7 metres. Drilling of all types totals 21,892 metres.

All holes are drilled from surface with various orientations depending on terrain constraints. RC drilling utilised a 5.25” (134 mm) face sampling hammer to generate one-metre samples, which are placed into large plastic bags marked with the hole ID and sample interval. Sample weights are recorded for each sample, with recovery maximised through use of PVC collars in upper portions of the collar.

Diamond drilling used a HQ3 size (63.5 mm diameter) with triple tube techniques used to maximise core recovery. NQ2 (50.6mm diameter) core was used for deeper drill holes. Drill core was collected from a core barrel and placed in appropriately marked core trays. Down hole core run depths were measured and marked with core blocks. Core was measured for core loss and core photography and geological logging completed.

Strong community, government relations

The Kangankunde Project has strong backing from both the local community and the Malawi Government. Though mining is yet to start at the site, Lindian executes a number of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives in the area which includes assisting Kangankunde Primary School with learning materials.

Minister of Mining Monica Chang’snamuno also visited Kangankunde where she hailed Lindian for fast-tracking works at the site. 

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