Defense infill drilling puts more meat on Wicheeda’s bones as resource upgrade looms
Toronto-listed Defense Metals (TSX:DEFN, OTCQB:DFMTF, FWB:35D) has good reason to be confident about the rare earth element resource at its Wicheeda deposit after infill drilling returned multiple high-grade hits.
In fact, the results such as 124m grading 3.58% total rare earth oxides (TREO) from a down-hole depth of 109.4m (WI22-68) and 106m at 2.53% TREO from just 30.7m (WI22-67) could well be enough to move more of the Inferred Resource into the higher confidence Integrated category.
The 4,244ha Wicheeda project currently has a CIM Definition Standards Indicated Resource of 5Mt grading 2.95% TREO and an Inferred Resource of 29.5Mt at 1.83% TREO.
Chief executive officer Craig Taylor noted that the results from WI22-67 – the latest assays to be received to date – establishes excellent continuity of mineralisation in sectional infill drilling at the project.
“As we advance the Wicheeda Project we know these kinds of results will contribute significantly to our goal of upgraded resource categories necessary to support a future Preliminary Feasibility Study,” he added.
The project is already the subject of a robust 2021 preliminary economic assessment technical report (PEA) which returned numbers such as after-tax net present value and internal rate of return – both measures of a project’s profitability – of C$517m and 18% respectively from a 1.8Mtpa throughput open pit mining operation.
WI22-67 was collared within the northern area of the project and drilled southward to intersect a broad mixed lithology comprising dolomite carbonatite and syenite.
The partial 106m intersect received to date includes a higher grade zone of 3.42% TREO over a 59m interval while assays for the remaining 165m to end of hole are expected in the coming days.
Meanwhile, WI22-68 is the deepest hole drilled to date at the project and included an exceptionally high-grade zone of 18m at 6.7% TREO.
All these follow up on previous holes in the current program which also returned strong results such as 192m at 1.78% TREO and 167m at 1.39% TREO.
This article was developed in collaboration with Defense Metals, 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.