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Sonic drilling underway at the 17 sq km Lithium Basin Project in Arizona

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Global Mining Review,

Bradda Head Lithium Ltd, the North America-focused lithium development group, has announced that the company has mobilised a sonic drilling rig to commence its 2023 drilling programme at the Basin Project, in Arizona, with the intention of further adding to its existing NI 43-101 Compliant Mineral Resource of Lithium Carbonate Equivalent (LCE) tonnes.


  • Following on from the success of the 2022 drilling at Basin East (“BE”), BHL has mobilised a sonic drill rig to the Company’s Basin Project to start the 2023 drilling programme at Basin, which has now commenced.
  • BHL expects to drill up to 25 holes in the coming months at Basin East Extension (“BEE”), BE and Basin North (“BN”) – BEE is adjacent to BE, and BN joins with BEE’s northern border.
  • The intent at Basin in 2023 is to increase coverage over as much of the Project’s 17km2 area as possible. To date, c.1.4 km2 of the area has been drilled, leading to a Mineral Resource of 371 kt of LCE.
  • Importantly for future resource growth, the Mineral Resource remains open to the west, northwest, and north of the drilled area where BHL has the adjacent BEE claim block and beyond into BN, BHL’s Basin West (“BW”) and Basin West Extension (“BWE”) claim blocks where geological mapping and geophysical surveys predict similar clay strata may be present.
  • Results from the Company’s previous drilling programme have indicated that the shallower High-Grade and Upper Clay zones thicken to the northwest extent of the drilled area towards Bradda’s BEE permits which could potentially be mined first as part of a phased mining operation. The planned drilling at BEE is expected to further investigate the extent of this higher-grade zone, and could potentially lead to expanding the current Resource, setting the scene for drilling at BW and BWE where BHL is permitting to drill early in 2024. BW and BWE cover an 11 km2 area, significantly larger than BE, BEE and BN combined.
  • During the drilling programme the Company will continue to guarantee that all efforts are focused on ensuring that work is carried out in these areas with as little disturbance as possible. Bradda Head is using sonic drilling, which is more environmentally sensitive as it uses very little water compared to diamond core or reverse circulation drilling.
  • BHL continues to progress the metallurgical testing of our lithium-bearing clays at Basin, trialling existing and new technologies which may qualify for funding grants under the Biden administration’s recent clean energy initiatives. The Company also continues to monitor progress made by other clay projects and learn from them.

Charles FitzRoy, CEO of Bradda Head, commented: “We are delighted to have commenced our 2023 drill programme at Basin, which we believe will generate material catalysts for the Company this year. The current Resource remains open to the west, north-west and north of where we have drilled to date, and this first programme of 2023 will enable us to expand our current Resource into more of our 17 km2 Basin Project in Arizona. The area to be drilled at the Basin East Extension is 2.5 km, 2 which is considerably larger than at Basin East (1.5km2) where we have our current Resource. We anticipate that this first programme will lead to a further resource upgrade in Q3 of this year.”

“Drilling at Basin East Extension and Basin North are the next exciting steps in proving up a resource over the total 17 km2 claim package at Basin, where we have an exploration target of up to 6 Mt LCE and a current Resource of 371 kt LCE covering an area of only 1.2 km2!”

“2023 is going to be a significant year of resource growth for Bradda Head. With further drilling already planned at Basin West and Basin West Extension, BHL is excellently placed to take full advantage of the near-term resource growth potential at our sedimentary lithium assets in Arizona. The area we are permitting at Basin West is over 11 km2, which is considerably larger than Basin East, Basin East Extension, and Basin North combined (c.6 km2).”

“In order for BHL to accelerate programmes at our flagship assets Basin and San Domingo, we are putting our funds (currently c.US$8 m at the end of February) where we believe it will give shareholders the greatest return from cash spent in the ground. Cash preservation is a top priority for BHL so whilst stock markets remain unusually volatile, we may consider rescheduling some of our other work programmes (Eureka, Wilson and Wikieup) and will update the timeline to Investors and in our presentation once finalised to reflect this.”

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