Galan takes on hard rock lithium with Greenbushes South program
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Special Report: Galan Lithium has finalised a work program at Greenbushes South, just a day after acquiring 80 per cent of the lithium project.
The majority stake in Greenbushes South was acquired by Galan (ASX:GLN) from Lithium Australia (ASX:LIT), and sits just 3km south of the world-class Greenbushes lithium mine owned by Talison Lithium – a joint venture of international industry behemoths Tianqi Lithium Corporation (currently selling a share of its stake to IGO) and Albemarle.
While that project is the largest hard-rock lithium mine in the world, Greenbushes South is deemed to have a low level of exploration maturity, with no available drilling results for lithium or lithium pathfinders.
A number of WA government MINEDEX database shows occurrences of lithium, beryl, tin feldspar tourmaline and mica in the area, a factor Galan said potentially indicated lithium-caesium-tantalum mineralisation associated with pegmatites.
Pegmatites are prospective for spodumene – the hard rock lithium-hosting mineralisation these sorts of projects are known for.
The project area due south of the Greenbushes mine is said to be highly prospective because of the potential for along-strike extensions south into the project area.
Field programs, including mapping, rock chip and soil samples are scheduled to begin over the coming weeks, with exploration work to be overseen by the Galan team led by Dr Luke Milan.
Earlier work which recorded the presence of pegmatites gives Galan immediate exploration targets.
These pegmatites were recorded during work focused on tin and tantalum mineralisation, but they could ultimately be the clue which leads Galan to a significant hard rock lithium find at Greenbushes South.
The acquisition of Greenbushes South is something of a side-step for Galan, which remains focused on the optimisation and development of its enormous Hombre Muerto West (HMW) lithium project in Argentina.
The company released a compelling preliminary economic assessment on HMW in December, placing the project’s cash costs at $US3518 per tonne of produced lithium carbonate – among the lowest in the industry.
Pre-tax net present value and internal rate of return came in at $US1billion and 22.8 per cent respectively.
In contrast to Greenbushes South’s hard rock potential, HMW is a lithium brine project, where lithium is extracted from salt lake brines.
Galan’s managing director JP Vargas de la Vega told Stockhead in December that the company would be focused on optimising its processes at HMV in 2021.
“This is a marathon, not a sprint,” he said at the time.
This article was developed in collaboration with Galan Lithium, 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.