Conico has received results for a further nine RC holes from last year’s Phase 1 drilling at its Mt Thirsty Joint Venture with Greenstone Resources (ASX:GSR) in WA, with shallow, thick and high-grade nickel-cobalt-manganese-scandium assays returned.

Best results include:

  • 44m at 0.03% Co, 0.47% Ni, 0.16% Mn and 39.2g/t Sc from 2m (MTRC035D), including 10m at 0.09% Co, 0.71% Ni, 0.38% Mn and 23.0g/t Sc from 33m;
  • 59m at 0.05% Co, 0.37% Ni, 0.35% Mn and 45.3g/t Sc from 10m (MTRC013D), including 11m at 0.18% Co, 0.45% Ni, 1.15% Mn and 49.7g/t Sc from 39m; and
  • 50m at 0.05% Co, 0.45% Ni, 0.32% Mn and 36.2g/t Sc from 0m (MTRC042D),

Including 20m at 0.09% Co, 0.55% Ni, 0.57% Mn and 28.9g/t Sc from 28m.

“These most recent results highlight the potential for the Mt Thirsty project to provide a low-cost, ethical and sustainable source of cobalt and nickel outside of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Russia,” Conico (ASX:CNJ) executive director Guy Le Page said.

Scandium by-product potential

The Phase I drilling campaign was also on the lookout for scandium which is not included within the existing resource estimate (of 26.9Mt at 0.126% cobalt, and 0.54% nickel).

Scandium is a rare earth metal valued for its high strength, light weight, and resistance to corrosion. It has a wide range of applications, including aerospace, defence, hydrogen fuel cells and electronics industries.

The global scandium market size is projected to reach US$977.3 million by 2030, growing at a forecasted Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 8.7% between 2022 to 2030.

The potential addition of scandium to the Co-Ni-Mn-Sc Mt Thirsty Project may provide a valuable by-product revenue stream, with current price of scandium oxide at A$1,198,200/t; cobalt at A$54,000/t; nickel at A$34,700/t and manganese at A$2,800/t6. 

Updated MRE and scoping study underway

An updated Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) for Mt Thirsty is currently underway, along with an updated scoping study assessing adoption of High-Pressure Acid Leaching (HPAL) and the addition of a cathode precursor plant to produce a Precursor Cathode Active Material (pCAM) – which could potentially transform the project’s economics.

“The project is uniquely positioned to support the continued decarbonisation of our economy, not only containing cobalt and nickel, but also hosting manganese and scandium, allowing the project to potentially produce a high-value pCAM product containing Co, Ni and Mn sourced from the Mt Thirsty deposit,” Le Page said.

“The project is entering a transformational phase with both an updated Mineral Resource Estimate and Scoping Study underway, with the former expected to be finalised within the next 1-2 weeks.

“We look forward to keeping shareholders updated as we continue to unlock the true potential of the Mt Thirsty project.”

The updated MRE is expected to be completed in early April and the scoping study in early July.

Concio expects the study will provide a foundation for the future consolidation and IPO of the Mt Thirsty project later this year, followed by a Pre-Feasibility study.




This article was developed in collaboration with Concio Limited (ASX:CNJ), 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.