Atlantic Lithium Ltd, an African-focused lithium exploration and development company on track to bring West Africa's first lithium mine into production, has announced the mobilisation of an additional three drill rigs, the expansion of the drilling programme and new drilling observations at the Ewoyaa Lithium Project in Ghana, West Africa where it has defined a JORC (2012) compliant mineral resource estimate (MRE) of 30.1 million t t 1.26% Li2O.
- Approximately 9166 m of reverse circulation (RC) drilling for 52 holes completed to date with assays pending.
- Multiple and significant visual spodumene pegmatite drill intercepts observed up to 80 m long in RC drill chips; assays pending.
- Second and third RC drill rigs arrived on site and commenced drilling; a diamond core drilling rig (DD) is due to arrive on site next week, increasing the total number of drilling rigs on site to four.
- Original planned drilling programme increased from approximately 19 000 m to approximately 37 000 m of exploration, resource extension, resource infill and geotechnical drilling.
- Airborne geophysical survey and 100 x 100 m grid soil geochemical survey for 9145 samples completed over the Cape Coast license; results pending.
- Exploration RC drilling designed to test new targets defined in auger drilling within the Ewoyaa pegmatite corridor, to the north and south of the current MRE.
- Resource extension and infill RC and DD drilling designed to test depth and strike extensions of known mineralisation, convert inferred to indicated resources and define measured resources for the first 1.5 years of mine production.
- Geotechnical DD drilling designed to test proposed mine pit wall ground conditions for detailed engineering design.
- Regional exploration auger drilling ongoing over Mankessim and Saltpond licenses.
- The company's intention to deliver a pre-feasibility study (PFS) during 3Q22 remains unchanged despite delays in receiving assay results from labs experiencing heightened demand.
Len Kolff, Interim CEO of Atlantic Lithium, said: “We are pleased to be increasing the number of drill rigs active on the ground, with four rigs planned to be drilling within the next two weeks.
“We have drilled over 9000 m to date with multiple new spodumene pegmatite intervals observed over the Grasscutter North prospect, with assays pending.
“Resource expansion drilling below the Ewoyaa Main deposit has returned significant widths of spodumene pegmatite observed in RC drill chips with up to 80 m intervals downhole in multiple drill holes and an apparent widening of the pegmatite at depth with assays pending and drilling ongoing. This bodes well for future resource upgrades.
“We have increased the planned meterage from approximately 19 000 m to 37 000 m with a significant increase in resource expansion and infill drilling planned over the Ewoyaa deposit, including infill for conversion to measured resources for the first 1.5 years of mine life.
“We are currently experiencing significant delays in assay turnaround time due to the lithium boom and stretched laboratories, with over one month delays; however, our timeline for the delivery of the PFS study during 3Q22 is unchanged.
“To date, only a small area of approximately 28 km2 has been auger tested, with an even smaller 13 km2 area drill tested within our broader 560 km2 lithium portfolio in Ghana.
“The airborne geophysical survey for radiometrics, magnetics and radar topography has been completed, as has the 100 x 100 m grid soil geochemistry survey over the Cape Coast license area with results pending.
“The exploration potential is clear, and we see significant opportunity for re-source growth. Not only do we believe that Project metrics will improve significantly beyond the current defined mine life, but we also see the potential for further economic improvement due to the recent increases in spodumene concentrate pricing which have far exceeded our initial SC6 price modelling parameters.
“These fundamentals continue to demonstrate Ewoyaa as an industry-leading asset; with the company ideally positioned to benefit from the growing lithium demand.”
Additional rigs mobilised and expanded programme
The drilling fleet has been enhanced with the arrival of an EDM 2000 RC rig and a UDR 300 RC rig on site and a further diamond drill rig arriving over the coming week, bringing the total number of drill rigs to four. To date, a total of 9166 m of drilling in 52 holes has been completed with assays pending.
The original planned programme of approximately 19 000 m of drilling has been increased to approximately 37 000 m of drilling including exploration, resource extension, resource infill for Indicated and measured resources and geotechnical DD drilling. The 37 000 m of drilling planned includes the 9,166m of drilling completed to date.
The current programme consists of approximately 13 000 m in 124 collars of exploration drilling, 18 000 m in 100 collars of resource expansion and inferred to indicated infill drilling, 5000 m in 60 collars of Indicated to measured infill drilling for the first 1.5 years of mine life and 1000 m in 6 collars of geotechnical drilling.
To date, approximately 28 km2 has been auger drill tested with 160 m, 80 m and 40 m line spacing and 20 m to 10 m collar spacing, with only 13 km2 drill tested within our broader 560 km2 portfolio in Ghana.
Significant observed spodumene pegmatite drill intervals; assays pending
Drilling observations to date for the 9166 m completed over the Grasscutter North target and Ewoyaa Main depth extension target within the current MRE has returned multiple visible spodumene pegmatite intervals with assays pending. Multiple steeply stacked pegmatite dykes with true widths between 4 – 17 m have been observed at Grasscutter North with assays pending.
Resource extension drilling at the Ewoyaa Main deposit has intersected significant pegmatite intervals in excess of 100 m and up to 150 m down hole with spodumene intervals observed over 80 m down hole in multiple holes such as GRC0669 and GRC0670 with assays pending. Drilling was completed below previously reported high-grade intervals in holes:
- GRC0425: 75 m at 1.17% Li2O from 68 m.
- GRC0426: 64 m at 1.28% Li2O from 74 m.
- GRC0428: 66 m at 1.26% Li2O from 41 m.
Newly completed holes are part of the resource expansion programme and indicate a thickening of the pegmatite at depth in this particular area with drilling ongoing and potential to add significant resource tonnes.
Regional auger drilling will continue in parallel with the RC drilling programme to test exploration targets within the Saltpond license and continue to define targets within the immediate MRE area in the Mankessim license.
Read the article online at: https://www.globalminingreview.com/exploration-development/27052022/atlantic-lithium-expands-ewoyaa-drill-programme/