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Namibia Critical Metals Successful Drilling Campaign on Schedule

The date of: 2020-06-19
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Namibia Critical Metals Successful Drilling Campaign on Schedule to Meet Objectives at Lofdal Heavy Rare Earth JV
 

source:Junior Mining Network

HALIFAX, NS / ACCESSWIRE / June 18, 2020 / Namibia Critical Metals Inc. ('Namibia Critical Metals' or the 'Company' or 'NMI') (TSXV:NMI) today provided an update on progress on the Lofdal Heavy Rare Earths Project ('Lofdal') in northern Namibia, which is a joint venture between the Company and Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation ('JOGMEC'). As previously announced (Company press release March 11, 2020) the Lofdal Joint Venture is operating under a Term 1 budget of CD$3,000,000 with the objectives of doubling the current resource size at Area 4 with a 7,700 m drill program, testing two high priority exploration targets with 1,500 m of drilling and carrying out further metallurgical test work to optimize the processing flow sheet. Progress since stating the drill program in early March is summarized as follows:

Drilling ahead of schedule with over 50% completed at Area 4 with results from first nine holes now reported

Drill results consistent with expected grades and thickness as predicted from the resource model, targeting to double current resource size in this first drilling phase

Drill rig will now move to exploration targets at Northern Splay and Dolomite Hill

Metallurgical bulk test runs (2.7 tonnes) completed on XRF sorter with analytical results pending. XRT sorter tests underway expecting to complete bulk test runs (4.4 tonnes) by mid-July

Don Burton, President of Namibia Critical Metals stated 'All holes drilled to date have intersected the Main Zone as expected. As we await lab results from the remaining thirteen holes from this phase of the Area 4 drilling, it is an opportune time to move the drill to our exploration targets where we believe the potential exists to develop satellite deposits. The drill will then return to Area 4 to complete the resource drilling program. The metallurgical program is advancing well with both XRF and XRT sorting tests providing very encouraging results. The objective with sorting is to achieve a 2-3X upgrade to the deposit grade and we look forward to a comprehensive evaluation of both technologies upon completion of the bulk test runs which will use about 7 tonnes of representative sample collected from trenches at Area 4.

These are challenging times for field operations and we are extremely fortunate to have a dedicated team in Namibia that has actually exceeded the planned monthly production since start up in March. Field operations continue with strict Covid-19 protocols in place.'

The Lofdal Heavy Rare Earths Project is located 450 kilometers northwest of the capital city of Windhoek in the Kunene Region of north-western Namibia. The project area covers 314 square kilometers centered on the Lofdal carbonatite complex which hosts a number of rare earth occurrences, including the Area 4 deposit (Figure 1). Mineralization at Area 4 is dominated by xenotime, which is highly enriched in heavy rare earths. Value drivers at Lofdal are dysprosium and terbium.

The current mineral resource at Area 4 has been drilled to depths of between 125 - 225 vertical meters and is estimated to be 2.88 Mt of indicated mineral resources at a grade of 0.32% TREO1 yielding 9,230 t of REO, of which 7,050 t are estimated to be heavy rare earth oxides ('HREO') and 3.28 Mt of inferred mineral resources at a grade of 0.27% TREO yielding 8,970 t of REO, of which 6,700 t are estimated to be HREO. Full disclosure is filed on SEDAR and provided in Preliminary Economic Assessment on the Lofdal Rare Earths Project, Namibia October 1, 2014 authored by David S. Dodd, The MDM Group, South Africa; Patrick J.F. Hannon, and William Douglas Roy, MineTech International Limited, Canada; Peter Roy Siegfried and Michael R. Hall, The MSA Group, South Africa.

Drilling will now move from Area 4 to test exploration targets at the Northern Splay and Dolomite Hill targets. The Northern Splay is located 10 kilometers northeast of Area 4 on an extension of the Area 4 structure, and Dolomite Hill is situated 2.5 km north of Area 4 in a separate mineralized structure .

Current Drilling Operations

The primary objective of the Lofdal Joint Venture is to double the current resource size with an additional 7,700 m of drilling. The Company has completed 4,447 m of drilling to date in twenty-one holes at Area 4 (Figure 2). Drilling operations have continued un-interrupted since beginning in early March and remain on schedule, however slight delays in receiving laboratory results have been realized due to Covid-19 restrictions in Namibia and Canada. These restrictions have since eased and a steady flow of analytical results is now expected to resume.

Results from the first nine holes have been received and all holes have intersected mineralization in the Main Zone (highlighted in grey) consistent with expected grades and thickness as predicted from the resource model. Drill results are reported in summary form in Table 1 and full disclosure of all individual elements is provided in Table 2.

1'TREO' refers to total rare earth oxides; 'HREO' refers to heavy rare earth oxides; 'heavy rare earths' as used in all Company presentations comprise europium (Eu), gadolinium (Gd), terbium (Tb), dysprosium (Dy), holmium (Ho), erbium (Er), thulium (Tm), ytterbium (Yb), lutetium (Lu) and yttrium (Y). Light rare earths comprise lanthanum (La), cerium (Ce), praseodymium (Pr), neodymium (Nd) and samarium (Sm). 'Heavy rare earth enrichment' is the ratio of HREO:TREO, expressed as a percentage.



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