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American Rare Earths set to drill large La Paz Southwest target

The date of: 2021-09-30
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Eight diamond drill holes are being planned to explore the lateral and vertical extent of the Southwest La Paz rare earth mineralisation.

American Rare Earths Ltd (ASX:ARR) plans to drill eight diamond holes across the new La Paz Southwest Project area in the US state of Arizona in a bid to firm up a conceptual exploration target of 742-928 million tonnes.

The core holes will provide geological data about the lateral and vertical extent of the mineralisation in the target area.

Planned for the first quarter of 2022, the exploratory drilling will constitute 900 metres of diamond core drilling. The targeted mineralisation has a conceptual average total rare earth oxide (TREO) grade of 350-400 parts per million (ppm) and scandium oxide grade of 20-24.5 ppm.

The company also intends to perform drilling on 20 additional mining claims via geological mapping covering 167 hectares, which were added to the La Paz Project area in July 2021.

La Paz Southwest is part of the La Paz Rare Earth Project owned by La Paz Rare Earth LCC a subsidiary of Western Rare Earths Inc, which itself is wholly owned by American Rare Earths Ltd.

If the exploratory drilling is successful, ARR plans to develop the La Paz Southwest area in conjunction with the La Paz maiden resource area two kilometres to the northeast.

'Excels by sheer volume'

“In 2019 we noted that the La Paz Rare Earth Project ‘excels by its sheer volume’ to quote technical reports available and suspected there was an opportunity to develop the asset further,” ARR managing director Keith Middleton said.

“Today, we can say that the La Paz project continues to exceed our expectations and provides huge potential and future flexibility to develop the La Paz REE project. The exploration target and exploration drilling are the first steps in our plans to define extensive mineable resources.”

Surface sampling across the La Paz Southwest area was performed in 2019 and 2020. Of 487 samples, 215 had TREO values exceeding 350 ppm.

In March 2021 two core holes were drilled, containing approximately 11 metres of TREO mineralisation exceeding 400 ppm and about 30 metres of TREO mineralisation exceeding 450 ppm, respectively.

Maiden resource upgraded

This new raft of exploratory drilling to the southwest of La Paz follows a recent upgrade to the quality and quantity of ARR’s maiden JORC resource. Drilling results delivered an increase of 117% to the indicated resource, which now constitutes 35.2 million tonnes of exploitable rare earth mineralisation.

The project’s JORC-compliant total resource tonnage has also increased by 33.1% to 170.6 million tonnes with an average grade of 391 ppm total rare earth elements as well as 4.4 million kilograms of scandium oxide.

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