Azure Minerals has dazzled the market, rolling out the best assays to date from its Andover lithium project including a more than 100m stretch of sparkling spodumene.

Backed by the world’s second largest lithium miner, Chile’s SQM, and legendary WA prospector Mark Creasy, their investment in Azure Minerals (ASX:AZS) could well be turning into yet another success story.

Drilling at the Pilbara property has stunned the market, with Azure’s shares up 68% on the open and almost 50% at 10.30am on June 13 as it reported a drill intercept of 105m at 1.26% Li2O from 256.3m in hole ANDD0208.

That included 42.1m at 2.51% Li2O from 259m and 22.8m at 3.57% Li2O, with a 0.5m stretch at 5.02% Li2O.

The technical limit of spodumene mineralisation in pegmatite is around 8% and the highest grade mining operation in the world – WA’s Greenbushes – runs at around 2% Li2O.

But at current lithium prices anything above and around 1% Li2O is extremely economic to say the least.

Other broad mineralised intercepts from the recent drilling campaign include 54.4m at 1.07% Li2O from 310.5m in ANDD0206, including 7.4m at 1.93% Li2O from 357.5m, 52.1m at 0.91% Li2O from 22.3m in ANDD0208 including 14.4m at 1.59% Li2O from 22.3m and 8.6m at 1.56% Li2O from 65.8m, and 38m at 0.97% Li2O from 442m in ANDD0202 including 17.5m at 1.35% Li2O from 442.5m, including 8.9m at 1.72% Li2O.

So far just 23 diamond holes and 8 reverse circulation holes have been completed, with more assays on the way after more recent diamond drilling hit similar widths with visual spodumene over the more than 2000m stretch of the AP0010-AO0012 pegmatite corridor


That’s some high grade spod right there. Pic: Supplied (AZS)

World class mineralisation 

Just 1km of that strongly mineralised stretch has been drilled so far, according to Azure MD Tony Rovira.

So far 8369m of diamond core has been drilled at the Andover lithium project near Port Hedland, adjacent to prospects containing a more than 70,000t nickel sulphide resource.

Almost 1400m has been completed in eight RC holes, with 1 or 2 additional rigs expected to head to site in the next few weeks.

Rovira said today’s results showed the Andover pegmatites have world class potential.

“These results highlight the exceptional thickness and high grades of lithium mineralisation within the Andover pegmatites, and the potential for Andover to host lithium resources of world-class scale and tenor,” he said.

“It is pleasing that our visual estimates of the spodumene content observed within the drill core correlate very closely with the assays. The successful intersection of significant quantities of spodumene mineralisation over substantial widths demonstrates our potential to deliver more broad, strongly mineralised intersections.

“Further assay results are expected to be released within the next two weeks.

“To date, we’ve only drilled along one kilometre of the strongly mineralised AP0010-AP0011-AP0012 corridor that has now been mapped and sampled over a strike length of more than two kilometres (including the AP0009 and AP0014 pegmatites), giving this prospect substantial volume potential.”


Azure has hit broad, high grade lithium in drilling at Andover. Pic: Supplied (AZS)

“Additionally, across the project area, our geologists have identified at least another eight zones hosting multiple outcropping spodumene-rich pegmatites with previously reported surface sampling returning high grades of lithium over significant strike lengths,” Rovira said.

“More rigs are set to be mobilised to site to test these high priority targets.”

Next moves 

Azure, which secured a $20m investment from SQM in January handing the Chilean owner of the Mt Holland lithium mine an almost 20% stake in the junior explorer, owns the Andover project in a 60-40 JV with Mark Creasy’s Creasy Group.

The next steps will help demonstrate the scale of the discovery both have bet big on, and enjoyed strong success with, thus far.

The Andover pegmatite swarm extends over a massive area of 9km east to west and up to 5km north to south within the central and eastern parts of the project footprint.

The receipt of recent environmental and heritage clearances will allow AZS to access high priority targets, with 5 to 6 drill rigs expected to the operating onsite in the months to come.

This will enable the rapid testing and delineation of potential lithium resources, with Azure’s rock kickers identifying abundant spodumene in outcrop across the more than 2000m strike corridor where spod mineralisation has been identified to date.

Surface sampling from visual spodumene outcrop over the past eight months or so has returned abundant lithium assays ranging between 2-4% Li2O.



This article was developed in collaboration with Azure Minerals, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.