RareX’s drilling has demonstrated very strong potential to expand existing resources at its Cummins Range project even as testwork returns promising phosphate recoveries.

This comes after the two diamond holes both returned record-breaking intersections of 455.6m grading 0.5% total rare earth oxide (TREO) and 5% phosphate in CDX0027 and 326.4m at 0.4% TREO and 4% phosphate in CDX0022.

The top hit is significantly higher than the previous record of 384.4m at 0.4% TREO and 4% phosphate in CDX0020 about 100 northwest of the two holes.

Adding further to these thick zones, both holes – drilled on the same section downdip of the existing resource – also returned multiple high-grade REE intersections above 0.5% TREO totalling 100.4m at 1.9% TREO including 17m at 2.4% TREO from CDX0027 and 60.5m at 1.8% TREO including 6.2m at 4.2% TREO from CDX0022.

For RareX (ASX:REE), the results are a clear sign that there is plenty of potential to grow the current resource of 18.8Mt grading 1.15% TREO and 10% phosphate.

“Our 2022 drilling program is continuing to provide overwhelming evidence that Cummins Range is a world-class mineral system, hosting both rare earth oxides and top-quality rock phosphate,” managing director Jeremy Robinson said.

“The latest drilling is now adding significant volume and scale to the deposit, with these latest intersections occurring well beyond the current Mineral Resource envelope.

“They will be incorporated in our next MRE update, which will in turn underpin a Pre-Feasibility Study to determine the optimum scale of this exciting and globally significant project.”

Drill results

Hole CDX0027 intersected 24 REE mineralised zones with a cumulative width and grade of 100.4m at 1.9% TREO – most of which are located in the hanging wall position proximal to, or on contact zones with the Rare Dyke.

Phosphate alteration around the Rare Dyke is also extensive and is expected to expand up-hole once assays for the upper 198m – drilled using a reverse circulation rig – are received.

Meanwhile, CXD0022 was drilled through the Pendant Dyke and Rare Dyke and stopped in the footwall at 439.4m.

This intersected 20 REE intervals which topped out with a 27.7m intersection grading 1% TREO in the hanging wall zone while the Rare Dyke yielded 6.15m at 4.2% TREO.

Consistent phosphate mineralisation was seen in most of CDX0022, with a large intersection starting at the Pendant dyke and finishing at the end-of-hole.

Phosphate a valuable by-product

Robinson also noted that metallurgical testwork had successfully confirmed the potential to extract a high-quality phosphate concentrate.

This work using a simple and proven beneficiation flowsheet successfully produced a 39.1% phosphate concentrate – well above the benchmark grade of 32% used in phosphate fertiliser production – with excellent recovery of 80.3%.

Notably, the use of conventional phosphate flotation circuits presents the potential to drive operating costs at Cummins Range lower compared to the already attractive numbers estimated in the recent Scoping Study.

The next phase of the phosphate mineral beneficiation testwork will focus on grind size optimisation, further gangue suppression, flotation conditions and circuit configuration optimisation to ensure the technical and economic feasibility of the beneficiation flowsheet.




This article was developed in collaboration with RareX, 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.