Shallow, thick, continuous, and stacked: How big is DY6’s Machinga rare earths discovery?
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More drill results from the emerging magnet rare earths-rich Machinga discovery confirm excellent continuity of the ever-expanding mineralised zone, which appears to “bell out” for as-yet unknown reasons.
DY6 Metals’ (ASX:DY6) flagship Machinga project in southern Malawi is just 40km from Lindian Resources’ 261Mt at 2.19% TREO Kangankunde project, described as one of biggest and best rare earths projects outside of China.
Machinga is enriched with high value, heavy rare earths elements (REEs) such as dysprosium and terbium – and holds significant niobium and tantalum potential as well.
Supply for all magnet REEs is expected to fall short of future production needs but experts believe dysprosium and terbium will be the most constrained.
Both elements are added to permanent magnets to improve thermal stability and energy density, which in turn increases the power and size efficiency of the magnet – used in electric vehicles, wind turbine generators and hard disc devices.
Niobium, on the other hand, has long been considered a ‘transition metal’ but has been gaining popularity for its ability to cut charging times and fire risks in lithium-ion batteries.
DY6’s maiden 35-hole, 3,643m RC drill program was designed to follow up on drilling from 2010, which returned a highlight 11m at 1% TREO (including 330ppm dysprosium) from a down-hole depth of 12m and 5m at 1.5% TREO from 26m.
Notable assays from the first 11 holes at the northern end of the Machinga Main anomaly – just one of six targets identified to date – include 7m at 1.42% total rare earth oxide (TREO) with 0.49% Nb2O5 and 16m at 0.54% TREO with 0.21% Nb2O5.
DY6 has now uncovered more high-grade REE and niobium from the next 11 holes at the Machinga Main Northern Zone.
DY6 says the results returned an average 3.2% dysprosium-terbium TREO in samples greater than 2,500ppm TREO at a cut-off grade of >2500ppm with “very high-grade” zones and intersections thickening at depth.
Best results include:
DY6 says it appears the mineralisation is hosted within hydrothermal breccias, formed when highly pressured, sometimes-mineral-rich fluids ‘fracture’ the rock.
It is likely that there are several parallel structures ‘stacking’ within the intrusion itself, which have the potential to increase the volume of mineralisation, the company says.
So far, drilling has confirmed excellent continuity in the mineralised zones, with radiometrics predicting the mineralised higher-grade zones with accuracy during drilling.
Importantly, it looks like the mineralised zones “bell out” for some unknown reason and are thickening at depth. All good things.
All Machinga site works have now been completed, with the rigs and crew demobilised and the team relocated to DY6’s Salambidwe project with exploration activity set to begin this month.
Results for the remaining RC holes from Machinga Main Northern Zone are expected to be released progressively during October and the first batch of DD assays (from eight diamond holes drilled for 900m) are expected in the December quarter.
This article was developed in collaboration with DY6 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.