Defense Metals Corp. (TSX-V: DEFN) (OTCQB: DFMTF) (FSE: 35D) is pleased to announce Rare Earth Element assay results from the final two core drill holes, totalling 295 metres, completed during 2022 at its 100% owned Wicheeda REE Deposit. These assay results are from two exploration geotechnical core drill holes. The final drill hole (WI22-79) returned the best drill intercept on a grade-times-width basis of the entire 18-hole 5,510 m (~18,077 feet) 2022 campaign.
Pit slope geotechnical drill hole WI22-78 (-60o dip at azimuth 200o) drilled into the west pit wall intersected well mineralized dolomite carbonatite that assayed 2.63% total rare earth oxide over 97 metres from surface within a broader mineralized one returning 2.03% TREO over 168 m (see Table 1 and Figure 1).
The final drill hole, WI22-79 (-65o dip at 095o azimuth), drilled within the central area of the Wicheeda Deposit and into the east pit wall intersected an upper high-grade mineralized dolomite-carbonatite interval from surface assaying 3.66% TREO over 138 m; and lower interval grading 0.50% TREO over 43 m (see Table 1 Figure 1, and Image 1).
The upper interval in WI22-79 represents the best mineralized intercept returned of all 2022 holes and ranks among the top 10 reported drill intercepts of the more than 10,000 m drilled in 47 holes Defense Metals has completed post-PEA (see “About the Wicheeda REE Project“).
Luisa Moreno, President, and Director of Defense Metals stated:
“The economic significance of the Wicheeda REE Project is underscored by the fact that the final drill hole yielded the best drill intercept of the 2022 campaign. Since the release of our positive PEA based on drilling completed up to the end of 2019, the last two years of exploration at Wicheeda has focused on resource expansion, delineation, and detailed pit slope geotechnical drilling designed to place us solidly on the path towards initiation of a Preliminary Feasibility Study (PFS). With critical minerals and particularly rare earth elements coming into sharper focus as part the rapidly accelerating transition to electric vehicles, Defense Metals looks forward to continuing to advance the social-environmental, metallurgical, engineering, and geotechnical aspects of the Wicheeda REE Project during 2023.”
Table 1. Final Wicheeda REE Deposit 2022 Diamond Drill Intercepts1
|Hole ID||From (m)||To
|Interval (m)||TREO2 (%)||Ce2O3 (%)||La2O3 (%)||Nd2O3 (%)||Pr2O3 (%)||Sm2O3 (ppm)||Gd2O3 (ppm)||Eu2O3 (ppm)||Dy2O3 (ppm)||Tb4O7 (ppm)||Ho2O3 (ppm)|
|1 The true width of REE mineralization is estimated to be 70-100% of the drilled interval.|
|2 TREO % sum of CeO2, La2O3, Nd2O3, Pr6O11, Sm2O3, Eu2O3, Gd2O3, Tb4O7, Dy2O3 and Ho2O3.|
About the Wicheeda REE Project
The 100% owned, 4,262-hectare (~10,532-acre) Wicheeda REE Project is located approximately 80 km northeast of the city of Prince George, British Columbia; population 77,000. The Wicheeda project is readily accessible by all-weather gravel roads and is near infrastructure, including power transmission lines, gas pipelines, the Canadian National Railway, and major highways.
The 2021 Wicheeda REE Project Preliminary Economic Assessment technical report outlined a robust after-tax net present value (NPV@8%) of $517 million and an 18% IRR3. This PEA contemplated an open pit mining operation with a 1.75:1 (waste:mill feed) strip ratio providing a 1.8 Mtpa (“million tonnes per year”) mill throughout producing an average of 25,423 tonnes REO annually over a 16 year mine life. A Phase 1 initial pit strip ratio of 0.63:1 (waste:mill feed) would yield rapid access to higher grade surface mineralization in year 1 and payback of $440 million initial capital within 5 years.
Methodology and Quality Assurance/Quality Control
The analytical work reported on herein was performed by ALS Canada Ltd. at their Langley (sample preparation) and Vancouver (ICP-MS fusion), B.C. facilities. ALS is an ISO-IEC 17025:2017 and ISO 9001:2015 accredited geoanalytical laboratory and is independent of the Defense Metals and the QP. Drill core samples were subject to crushing at a minimum of 70% passing 2 mm, followed by pulverizing of a 250-gram split to 85% passing 75 microns. A 0.1-gram sample pulp was then subject to multi-element ICP-MS analysis via lithium-borate fusion to determine individual REE content (ME-MS81h). Defense Metals follows industry standard procedures for the work carried out on the Wicheeda Project, with a quality assurance/quality control (“QA/QC”) program. Blank, duplicate, and standard samples were inserted into the sample sequence sent to the laboratory for analysis. Defense Metals detected no significant QA/QC issues during review of the data.
The scientific and technical information contained in this news release as it relates to the Wicheeda REE Project has been reviewed and approved by Kristopher J. Raffle, P.Geo. (B.C.), Principal and Consultant of APEX Geoscience Ltd. of Edmonton, Alberta, who is a director of Defense Metals and a “Qualified Person” as defined in NI 43-101. Mr. Raffle has verified the data, which included a review of the sampling, analytical and test methods underlying the data, information and opinions disclosed herein.
|3 Independent Preliminary Economic Assessment for the Wicheeda Rare Earth Element Project, British Columbia, Canada, dated January 6, 2022, with an effective date of November 7, 2021, and prepared by SRK Consulting (Canada) Inc. is filed under Defense Metals Corp.’s Issuer Profile on SEDAR (www.sedar.com).|
About Defense Metals Corp.
Defense Metals Corp. is a company focused on the development of its 100% owned Wicheeda Rare Earth Element mineral deposit, located near Prince George, British Columbia, Canada, that contains metals and elements commonly used in in green energy, aerospace, automotive and defense technologies. Rare earth elements are especially important in the production of magnets used in wind turbines and in permanent magnet motors for electric vehicles.
enCore Energy Corp. (NYSE American: EU) (TSX-V: EU) announces tha... READ MORE
Canada Silver Cobalt Works Inc. (TSX-V: CCW) (OTC: CCWOF) (Frankf... READ MORE
GoGold Resources Inc. (TSX: GGD) is pleased to announce that it h... READ MORE
KEY HIGHLIGHTS: New drill results from 8 holes continue to show s... READ MORE
Ultra Lithium Inc. (TSX-V:ULT) (OTCQB: ULTXF) (Frankfurt: QFB) i... READ MORE
We acknowledge the [financial] support of the Government of Canada.