Radiometric survey over Bindi’s Schryburt Lake highlights even more similarities to Canada’s only niobium mine
Link copied to
One of the defining features of Bindi’s Schryburt Lake project in Ontario, Canada – its resemblance to the producing Niobec niobium mine – has been further enhanced by a radiometric survey.
The 62.4km2 project in the highly prospective Western Superior Province region shares many geological and geophysical similarities to Niobec, which is one of only three global producers of the metal found in superconducting magnets, rockets, turbines, and medical instruments and is emerging as an alternative to cobalt in lithium-ion batteries.
Niobium is a super metal. According to Niobec owner Magris Performance Materials, integrating $9 worth of niobium in a car can reduce its weight by 100kg and increase fuel efficiency by as much as 5%.
Radiometric surveying for thorium – a high percentage element in monazite minerals that are an excellent indicator of REE-niobium mineralisation – has now identified five new anomalies and expanded the existing Blue Jay, Starling and Goldfinch anomalies.
Where it gets really exciting for Bindi Metals (ASX:BIM) is that its detailed survey has returned strong similarities to the lower resolution anomaly which is associated with the 1Bt at 1.7% total rare earth oxide (TREO) and 700Mt at 0.4% niobium oxide deposit at Niobec. The Niobec mine sold for $530 million USD in 2014.
This lends credence to its belief that Schryburt Lake has the potential to host significant REE-niobium deposits whilst adding weight to the previous comparison in magnetic data between the two projects.
Additionally, the expansion of the Blue Jay, Starling and Goldfinch anomalies is also supported by magnetic and biogeochemistry data.
“These new exploration results from Schryburt continue to demonstrate the prospectivity of the Schryburt Lake carbonatite to host significant rare earth element (REE) and niobium deposits,” executive director Henry Renou said.
“The exciting new radiometric results are significant for the project with similar radiometric anomalies to the world class Niobec deposit.”
The result is made all the more remarkable given that Bindi, which listed last year with the Biloela copper project in Queensland, has only just completed the acquisition of the project.
Schryburt Lake hosts a 4.5km diameter carbonatite pipe with historical drill assays of up to 5.7% TREO while up to 1.8% niobium was returned in historical outcrop sampling.
The company’s subsequent exploration identified the Blue Jay and Blackbird anomalies.
Of the two, Blue Jay is particularly interesting as the initial sampling returned high-grade assays of up to 3.6%, total rare earth oxides (TREO) and 0.7 % niobium from a 110m by 80m zone with greater than 2 % TREO.
This is now looking even more exciting as the radiometric survey has mapped out a 650m by 600m anomaly that is coincident with a 2.8km concentric magnetic low as well as elevated biogeochemistry assays of up to 18ppm TREO (four times higher than background levels) and 351 parts per billion niobium, which is seven times higher than background levels.
The new data has also defined a 1,000m by 800m thorium radiometric anomaly at Goldfinch, where rock chip sampling has returned up to 1.8% niobium and an average of 25% neodymium and praseodymium as well as up to 130ppm scandium oxide.
Goldfinch is also coincident with a 1.6km north-south magnetic high and biogeochemistry assays of up to 40ppm TREO and up to 289ppm niobium.
Starling is now covered by a 750m by 550m radiometric anomaly with up to 5.7% TREO in drill assays that is coincident with a 1.5km concave magnetic low as well as elevated biogeochemistry assays up to 22 ppm TREO and 279ppm niobium.
Radiometric surveying over Blackbird also defined a 400m by 350m anomaly with up to 0.4% TREO and 0.2% niobium in rock samples coincident with the same 2.8km magnetic low that hosts Blue Jay.
Separately, the five new radiometric anomalies are all coincident with magnetic anomalies as well as elevated biogeochemical assays for REEs and niobium.
Beside looking increasingly like the Niobec mine, Schryburt Lake is also located within a known mining district near a number of advanced REE projects.
These include VR Resources’ (TSX:VVR) Hecla-Kilmer project where drilling has returned up to 461m at about 1% TREO and Geomega Resources’ (TSX:GMA) Montviel project, which has a resource of 267Mt at 1.5% TREO and 0.14% niobium.
It also comes as Canada experiences a surge in resource exploration spending on the back of its strong potential for critical minerals such as lithium and REEs.
Bindi has now secured a contractor for its upcoming drill program with permitting – including negotiations with First Nations – progressing well.
Results of a hyperspectral survey are also expected to be announced shortly whilst drilling is expected to start this quarter.
This article was developed in collaboration with Bindi 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.