Junior explorer Monax Mining has struck a deal to buy into a vanadium project in Western Australia’s mid-west region.

Monax (ASX:MOX), which was once solely focused on gold exploration, can earn up to an 80 per cent stake in Mithril Resources’ (ASX:MTH) Limestone Well vanadium project by spending $2.5 million over the next five years.

The company had been looking for something to supercharge its share price and in March revealed it favoured lithium.

Two months later Monax inked a deal that gave it the option to acquire a 90 per cent interest in an exploration licence at Moolyella in West Australia’s Pilbara region – 80km from Pilbara Minerals’ (ASX:PLS) massive Pilgangoora lithium and tantalum project – one of the biggest hard-rock lithium projects in the world.

“Battery metals are well supported by the market at the moment and obviously the price of those commodities is quite high as well,” boss Ian Gordon told Stockhead previously.

Monax Mining (ASX:MOX) shares over the past year.
Monax Mining (ASX:MOX) shares over the past year.

Vanadium is the best performing battery metal – more than doubling in the past year and rocketing over 300 per cent since January 2016.

Traditionally the steel industry consumes around 90 per cent of global vanadium, but demand from the renewable energy battery sector is starting to take-off.

Vanadium redox flow batteries (VRFBs) have become the preferred solution for renewable long duration energy storage because they are cheaper and have the longest life spans.

The project Monax is earning into adjoins Neometals’ (ASX:NMT) Barrambie titanium and vanadium project – which is being spun out into a new company that will be listed on the ASX.

The tenements have had limited base metals and gold exploration completed over them and no previous exploration for vanadium.

Monax says it will undertake aircore drilling to confirm that the titanium and vanadium mineralisation present at Barrambie continues into the Limestone Well project.