• Victory Metals uses low-cost physical screening to upgrade North Stanmore regolith-clay grades by an average of 63%
  • Optimised REE regolith-clay fractions are expected to improve leaching efficiency, which will reduce reagent consumption
  • Further MREC test product using beneficiated material to be produced in April 2024
  • North Stanmore resource upgrade expected in May 2024


Special Report: Simple, low-cost physical screening has delivered an average 63% increase in the TREO grade of material sourced from Victory Metals’ North Stanmore REE project near Cue, Western Australia.

Recent drilling at North Stanmore confirmed its ‘exceptional’ dysprosium and terbium ratios with a combined value 900% higher than the most valuable light rare earth elements, while extending the exploration target zone by ~51km2.

Victory Metals (ASX:VTM) previously outlined an exploration target of 700-1,100Mt with valuable magnet REEs dysprosium and terbium making up 7.75% of the TREO.

Other significant highlights include up to 68% heavy rare earth oxide (HREO) to total rare earth oxide (TREO).

North Stanmore also has a resource of 250Mt or 130,000t of contained TREO, with HREO making up 33% of the total resource.

Drilling has also returned significant scandium anomalism, which adds another layer of value to the project.

Previous metallurgical test work in November 2023 successfully produced a high-value, heavy rare earth-enriched mixed REE carbonate (MREC) product.


Beneficiation delivers the goods

The ongoing beneficiation test work uses a low capex and opex method to separate optimised REE regolith-clay material from the coarse fraction material prior to processing.

And it appears to be paying off with simple physical screen carried out by Core Resources delivering an average increase in the TREO grade by 63% to 1,526ppm across all samples, with increases of up to 187% noted.

VTM says this low cost technique demonstrated that 50% of the clay material can be rejected prior to processing, with the remaining 50% clay material hosting 70% of the REE mineralisation, an upgrade which is expected to deliver substantial opex savings.

The upgraded material features outstanding ratios of magnet REEs neodymium and praseodymium (making up 30% of the TREO) along with high-value dysprosium and terbium.

Scandium – a high value critical mineral used in alloys – content also increased by 56%.

“These results not only exceed expectations but also underscore the exceptional potential of North Stanmore,” VTM chief executive Brendan Clark says.

“They demonstrate the important role of basic geochemical research and metallurgical test work to improve our understanding the influence of oxidation on rare earth element systematics in ionic clay-regolith rare rarth systems.

“The adoption of upstream beneficiation is proving to be strategically sound. This approach involves initially separating optimised Rare Earth regolith-clay fractions to improve leaching efficiency. It sets a strong foundation for subsequent processing stages whilst further reducing impurities like aluminium and iron and substantially reducing reagent consumption.”

Clark adds that the increase in REE head grade to 1,527ppm TREO – a substantial enhancement in the concentration of valuable REEs with exceptional percentages of dysprosium and terbium – made North Stanmore a significant player in the magnet REE sector.


Further activity

VTM expects that successful beneficiation of the feed ore will further reduce reagent costs for the production of a MREC product and potentially improve the TREO concentration.

The company is also looking into the opportunity to recover copper, cobalt and nickel in the solution as valuable by-products in the next round of metallurgical testing.

Production of this further MREC test product is expected in April 2024.

Further metallurgical leach tests on the <53µm beneficiated material will also be carried out.

Separately, VTM expects to upgrade the resource in early May 2024 following a successful infill drilling program totalling 13,718m in November 2023 that demonstrated significant sections and grades.




This article was developed in collaboration with Victory 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.