Wednesday 13th December 2017

Resource Clips


July, 2016

Earth science for everyone

July 29th, 2016

Geoscience B.C. puts extensive resource knowledge into the public domain

by Greg Klein

Geoscience B.C. puts extensive resource knowledge into the public domain

Outfitted with sensitive magnetometers, three Cessna Super Caravans
will fly the largest survey in Geoscience B.C.’s 11-year history.
(Photo: Geoscience B.C.)

 

It’s probably one of the biggest geophysical surveys underway anywhere. Pilots now have three magnetometer-equipped Cessnas criss-crossing an especially rugged 24,000-square-kilometre expanse of west-central British Columbia on tight, 250-metre linespacing. This is Search Phase II, part of an even bigger project that will make “a generational contribution to better understand the area’s geology and mineral potential,” says Bruce Madu, VP of minerals and mining for Geoscience B.C. But the results will hardly be limited to industry. The non-profit’s mission is to access “earth science for everyone.”

Data of this quality rarely finds its way to junior explorers, let alone prospectors. But proprietary software makes it available to anyone with an internet connection. Besides mineral opportunities, practical advantages include land use planning for regional districts, local communities and First Nations.

The grid extends from Fort Fraser to Smithers, building on two previous surveys. Last year’s Phase I flew over neighbouring terrain between Terrace, Kitimat and Smithers. The 2013 TREK program covered an area bounded by Vanderhoof, Fraser Lake and Quesnel, conducting sampling and mapping, as well as airborne mag. The three surveys combined will cover 55,500 square kilometres, about the size of Nova Scotia.

Geoscience B.C. puts extensive resource knowledge into the public domain

When combined with two previous surveys, this year’s program
will provide magnetic data for 55,500 square kilometres.
(Photo: Geoscience B.C.)

TREK’s inspiration came from the Blackwater discovery, now New Gold’s (TSX:NGD) proposed open pit mine with reserves of 8.2 million ounces gold and 61 million ounces silver. Yet “the surrounding geology is poorly understood,” Madu says.

The Phase II flyover includes another proposed mine, Pacific Booker Minerals’ (TSXV:PBM) Morrison copper-gold project, as well as Thompson Creek Metals’ (TSX:TCM) majority-held Endako molybdenum mine and the former Bell-Granisle copper-gold mines. The survey just bypasses Imperial Metals’ (TSX:III) 50%-held Huckleberry copper mine.

Low prices put Endako on care and maintenance, with Huckleberry slated to follow this summer. But Geoscience B.C. helped extend the latter mine’s life by about two years, Madu says. “We flew some geophysics, the company participated and ended up drilling new ore. A couple of hundred jobs were given a couple more years.”

The region “clearly has substantial mineral potential,” Madu points out. “Even more importantly it has excellent infrastructure, lots of road networks, there’s rail in the area and hydro nearby, so it can be quite a cost-effective place to discover and develop a mine.”

Having just reconnoitred with the Search Phase II crew, Madu waxes enthusiastically about the staff, the three Cessna Super Caravans especially suited for this survey’s challenges, the ultra-sensitive magnetometers and the preliminary data. “It excites me—the quality is superb.”

Phase II comprises one of 13 projects scheduled for this year, with a budget totalling $2.5 million. “They cover all sorts of perspectives,” Madu says. “We’ll be active in the Sheep Creek, Barkerville and Cassiar gold camps, the Toodoggone region, we’ve got a mapping crew south of Terrace working on last year’s geophysics, we’ll be east of the Penticton gold camp around the Boundary area. We have chemistry projects re-analyzing almost 5,000 archive samples from southeastern British Columbia as well as the Atlin area. And we’ve got a lot of value-added projects on the go this year, taking existing data and putting together a more complete picture combining geophysics, geochemistry and geology, which I think is a big advantage for the industry’s future, being able to have these super-sized data sets.”

Not limited to mineral exploration, Geoscience B.C. also conducts surveys related to areas such as oil and gas, geothermal energy and groundwater.

In addition to fundamental baseline data creation, we do a lot of innovative research as well.—Bruce Madu,
VP of minerals and
mining for Geoscience B.C.

“On the minerals side, during our 11 years of operation we surveyed a large portion of the province with geophysics, we re-analyzed almost the entire suite of geochemical samples for the province, we provided a lot of innovative research in glacial tills and tree-top sampling, we funded new geochemical methods using water in the field as well as capturing gases and sampling organic materials. So in addition to fundamental baseline data creation, we do a lot of innovative research as well.”

Next year’s plans call for Search Phase III extending northeast to the Quesnel copper belt and covering a region that hosts Imperial’s Mount Polley copper-gold-silver mine, the auriferous turf of Barkerville Gold Mines TSXV:BGM, Thompson Creek’s Mount Milligan copper-gold operation and AuRico Metals’ (TSX:AMI) gold-copper-silver deposits at Kemess.

Looking further ahead, Madu sees the organization “looking at the mining cycle instead of just exploration to see what we can do to help the development or efficiency of mining. We might look at research into subjects like water, tailings and metallurgy, for example.”

The group was founded in 2005 when the province put up money as an inducement to industry contributions. A lot of those contributions come from preferred rates or volunteer work supporting a small staff. Regional trusts have also contributed. Last May the province forked over $5 million.

The results of all that go online, available to everyone. Geoscience B.C.’s Earth Science Viewer opens with a satellite image of the province. Users can zoom in on a particular area, load a layer of data from the selections to the left, then overlay additional data. New info comes online as survey results are processed. Mineral tenures are updated daily, with links to the government’s database of claimholders.

“Viewers can put the tie-dyed geophysical charts on top of the geology layer to see how they agree or don’t agree,” says Madu. “I think that’s quite a powerful prospecting tool because one thing we want to do is challenge assumptions. If the geology and geophysics are telling different stories, we want people to research that and explore it.”

A planned upgrade, possibly within a year, will make the viewer three-dimensional, “something like Google Earth where you can tip it on its side and fly around valleys a bit,” he adds.

With a wealth of practical info for industry and communities alike, the viewer “puts the power of information into the hands of people who can use it.”

July 29th, 2016

Five Quebec gold juniors that could be acquired soon SmallCapPower
Brexit post-mortem GoldSeek
Living in uncertain times: An updated picture of country risk Equities.com
What experts predict for the new silver bull market Streetwise Reports
Lithium contract prices begin Q3 move towards high China levels Benchmark Mineral Intelligence
Nickel near eight-month high as metals gain on stimulus speculation NAI 500
Canada welcomes move towards ratification of EU trade deal Industrial Minerals
A classic case of failed socialism: What’s next after Brexit? Stockhouse
Limestone: Commodity overview Geology for Investors
Lithium in Las Vegas: A closer look at the lithium bull The Disruptive Discoveries Journal

Nickel Belt MP Marc Serré extols Sudbury’s environmental stewardship as well as its importance as a mining centre

July 28th, 2016

…Read more

July 28th, 2016

What experts predict for the new silver bull market Streetwise Reports
Lithium contract prices begin Q3 move towards high China levels Benchmark Mineral Intelligence
Lies, fraud and obstruction: A look back at Enron’s downfall Equities.com
SWOT analysis: Is there increased political risk building into the gold market? GoldSeek
Nickel near eight-month high as metals gain on stimulus speculation NAI 500
Canada welcomes move towards ratification of EU trade deal Industrial Minerals
Gold junior climbs on assays SmallCapPower
A classic case of failed socialism: What’s next after Brexit? Stockhouse
Limestone: Commodity overview Geology for Investors
Lithium in Las Vegas: A closer look at the lithium bull The Disruptive Discoveries Journal

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

July 27th, 2016

by Jeff Desjardins | posted with permission of Visual Capitalist | July 27, 2016

Tesla Motors officially unveils its massive new Gigafactory 1 at a grand opening on July 29.

The ultimate objective of the first Gigafactory is simple, but it is not for the faint of heart. Battery costs are the most expensive component of electric vehicles and the multi-billion-dollar Gigafactory aims to combine scale, vertical integration and other efficiencies to bring lithium-ion battery costs down.

Costs have already come down faster than most analysts predicted and the Gigafactory could be the final catalyst to get below the industry’s holy grail of $100 per kWh. Cheaper battery packs could make electric vehicles competitive with traditional gas-powered vehicles—and if that happens, it is a game-changer for the auto industry.

It’s important to note that the Gigafactory is fairly modular by design and construction is not complete yet. That said, here is what we know about the Gigafactory and its possible impact.

 

The Tesla Gigafactory 1 will be the largest building in the world by footprint.

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

The Gigafactory will take up 5.8 million square feet of space, making it bigger than Boeing’s giant facility in Everett, Washington. That’s roughly equivalent to 100 football fields.

While the Gigafactory will certainly be one of the largest factories by volume, it will be hard to compete with Boeing for first place there. Boeing’s Everett facility, which is six storeys high to accommodate construction of the giant planes, has a total of 472 million cubic feet of volume.

 

The scale will make production of lithium-ion batteries way cheaper

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

Tesla recently stated that its current battery cost is $190 per kWh for the Model S. The Gigafactory aims to reduce battery costs by 30%. Tesla expects this to happen through vertical integration, adding economies of scale, reducing waste, optimizing processes and tidying up the supply chain.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has also stated that the company is changing the form factor of the batteries from the industry standard. Lithium-ion cells used for notebook computer batteries are typically produced in an 18650 cell format (18mm x 65mm), but Tesla will produce them in a 20700 cell format (20mm x 70mm).

 

Tesla initially planned to produce 50 GWh of battery packs by 2020

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

 

However, Tesla has now moved that target forward by two years

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

Now it’s anticipated that Tesla could triple battery production to meet this demand. This means it could produce up to 105 GWh of battery cells and 150 GWh of completed battery packs. Musk says the current factory size will be sufficient for this ramp-up.

 

This will require serious amounts of raw materials

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

We previously showed the extraordinary amounts of materials needed to build a Tesla Model S. The batteries, which currently use an NCA cathode formulation, need lithium, graphite, cobalt, nickel and other base metals that aren’t used as much in an internal combustion engine.

This has created a significant rush for suppliers of these raw materials. It’s also something we are covering in our five-part battery series, in which we are looking at lithium-ion battery demand, as well as the materials that will need to be sourced as electric cars go mainstream.

 

If Tesla hits its 2018 projection, it will be a serious milestone for EVs

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

Tesla aims to sell 500,000 cars in 2018. If it hits the mark, it will be a big milestone for the electric vehicle market.

To put that number in perspective, the total amount of sales (all time) for the three most popular EV models (Leaf, Volt, Model S) added up to only about 404,000 cars as of December 2015.

 

This would also put Tesla on par with major auto brands

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

Tesla is still a small auto manufacturer—but if it meets its stated production goal of 500,000 vehicles in 2018, that will be comparable with brands like Chrysler, Land Rover, Isuzu, Volvo and Lexus.

This still doesn’t compare to a giant like Ford, which sold 780,354 F-series pickups alone in 2015. But it is a step in the right direction for Elon Musk’s company.

 

Every 500,000 electric cars on the road saves 192 million gallons of gas

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

That’s equal to 290 Olympic-sized swimming pools filled with gasoline or 21,333 tanker trucks. Even taking into account coal power and pollution, driving a Tesla is already far better for the environment in most American states.

 

Other Giga-facts

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

The Gigafactory will be 100% powered by renewable energy. It’ll have solar panels covering the roof while also drawing power from wind and geothermal.

It will employ 6,500 people and it will have a state-of-the-art recycling system to make use of old battery packs.

Musk says the “exit rate” of lithium-ion cells from the Gigafactory will literally be faster than bullets from a machine gun.

 

Bonus slide

Visual Capitalist puts the new Tesla Gigafactory in perspective

Last week Musk unveiled the “master plan” behind Tesla. The Gigafactory will ultimately help make these ambitions possible.

Posted with permission of Visual Capitalist.

July 27th, 2016

Lithium contract prices begin Q3 move towards high China levels Benchmark Mineral Intelligence
Lies, fraud and obstruction: A look back at Enron’s downfall Equities.com
SWOT analysis: Is there increased political risk building into the gold market? GoldSeek
Nickel near eight-month high as metals gain on stimulus speculation NAI 500
New stock market highs correlate to $57 trillion in printed global currency units Streetwise Reports
Canada welcomes move towards ratification of EU trade deal Industrial Minerals
Gold junior climbs on assays SmallCapPower
A classic case of failed socialism: What’s next after Brexit? Stockhouse
Limestone: Commodity overview Geology for Investors
Lithium in Las Vegas: A closer look at the lithium bull The Disruptive Discoveries Journal

Another lithium acquisition puts 92 Resources in Quebec’s James Bay region

July 26th, 2016

by Greg Klein | July 26, 2016

A company already exploring for lithium in the Northwest Territories, 92 Resources TSXV:NTY announced its acquisition of a Quebec prospect on July 26. The 5,536-hectare Pontax property in the James Bay region has undergone little exploration so far. Yet historic satellite imagery has shown pegmatite outcrops and indicated other potential pegmatite occurrences.

Another lithium acquisition puts 92 Resources in Quebec’s James Bay region

A 1999 government mapping program identified tourmaline-bearing pegmatite outcrops on the property’s northern area, about one kilometre from a spodumene- and tourmaline-bearing pegmatite outcrop.

The company plans to review historic data prior to mapping and sampling known pegmatite occurrences.

The purchase agreement calls for three million shares and $50,000 over one year. The vendor gets a 3% NSR, of which 92 Resources may buy a third.

In June the company announced a field program at Hidden Lake, an NWT project where recent sampling assayed as high as 3.06% Li2O.

Also last month the company raised $862,820 from exercised warrants that followed an April private placement of $318,836.

Read interviews with Chris Berry and Jon Hykawy discussing energy metals.

July 26th, 2016

Lithium contract prices begin Q3 move towards high China levels Benchmark Mineral Intelligence
Lies, fraud and obstruction: A look back at Enron’s downfall Equities.com
SWOT analysis: Is there increased political risk building into the gold market? GoldSeek
Nickel near eight-month high as metals gain on stimulus speculation NAI 500
New stock market highs correlate to $57 trillion in printed global currency units Streetwise Reports
Canada welcomes move towards ratification of EU trade deal Industrial Minerals
Gold junior climbs on assays SmallCapPower
A classic case of failed socialism: What’s next after Brexit? Stockhouse
Limestone: Commodity overview Geology for Investors
Lithium in Las Vegas: A closer look at the lithium bull The Disruptive Discoveries Journal

Diamond indicators suggest extensions, new targets for Dunnedin Ventures

July 25th, 2016

by Greg Klein | July 25, 2016

Techniques used to find Canada’s first big diamond discovery have brought highly encouraging results for Dunnedin Ventures’ (TSXV:DVI) Kahuna project in Nunavut. Of 118 glacial till samples taken last year, all showed kimberlite indicator minerals (KIMs), with 78 also revealing diamond indicator minerals (DIMs). Results released July 25 suggest potential extensions to known diamond-bearing kimberlite dykes, as well as new targets for potential diamond-bearing dykes and pipes.

Diamond indicators suggest extensions, new targets for Dunnedin Ventures

A sample of Kahuna project stones
ranging between 1.7 and 2.36 millimetres.

Dunnedin conducted the sampling under the guidance of director Chad Ulansky and technical adviser Chuck Fipke, best known for his Ekati discovery. Analysis used proprietary chemistry filters developed by Fipke.

Potential extensions were found to four dykes, Kahuna, Notch, PST and 07KD-24, in all of which previous drilling had found diamonds. Historic, non-43-101 results from 07KD-24 reported 305 diamonds, including seven commercial-sized stones, from a sample of only 2.2 kilograms. “Very high DIM counts are present over 600 metres of strike perpendicular to ice transport direction in the vicinity of 07KD-24, suggesting significant possible strike extent for this kimberlite,” Dunnedin stated.

Results from three other areas show DIMs down-ice from geophysical signatures that were consistent with pipes found elsewhere on the property.

On Fipke’s recommendation, Dunnedin plans a property-scale program beginning with additional till sampling in August.

The project’s Kahuna and Notch dykes, 12 kilometres apart, have a January 2015 inferred resource showing:

  • Kahuna (+0.85 mm cutoff): 3.06 million tonnes averaging 1.04 carats per tonne for 3.19 million carats
  • (+1.18 mm cutoff): 0.8 ct/t for 2.45 million carats

  • Notch (+0.85 mm cutoff): 921,000 tonnes averaging 0.9 ct/t for 829,000 carats
  • (+1.18 mm cutoff): 0.83 ct/t for 765,000 carats

  • Total (+0.85 mm cutoff): 3.99 million tonnes averaging 1.01 ct/t for 4.02 million carats
  • (+1.18 mm cutoff): 0.81 ct/t for 3.22 million carats

Both kimberlites remain open along strike and at depth.

In March Dunnedin announced 36 commercial-sized diamonds had been recovered from a 2.4-tonne Notch sample that was about 40% complete. Last November an 820-kilogram sample from the project’s PST kimberlite revealed 96 commercial-sized stones. Valuation has yet to take place.

The 13,000-hectare property sits about 25 kilometres from the hamlet of Rankin Inlet on Hudson Bay’s northwestern shore.

Read more about Dunnedin Ventures.

Read more about Canadian diamond projects.

See Chris Berry’s report on long-term diamond demand.

Drilling begins on Kapuskasing Gold’s Rollo property in northern Ontario

July 25th, 2016

by Greg Klein | July 25, 2016

Following up on last year’s high-grade samples, Kapuskasing Gold TSXV:KAP now has a drill program underway at its Rollo project in northern Ontario. On July 25 the company announced that three or four holes, each about 50 metres’ depth, will test the property’s Racicot gold showing.

Drilling begins on Kapuskasing Gold’s Rollo property in northern Ontario

Channel sample results from the area in August 2015 included 8.82 grams per tonne gold over 0.6 metres. Grab samples assayed as high as 1, 1.89 and 11.41 g/t gold.

The Racicot showing appears to be associated with a north-bearing quartz, quartz carbonate vein system crosscutting east-west trending mafic metavolcanics and a syenite/porphyry dyke system that trends sub-parallel to the metavolcanics, the company stated. “The drill program is designed to get a better understanding of these geological relationships.”

Kapuskasing’s portfolio includes seven properties along extensions of the Destor-Porcupine structure or Goldcorp’s (TSX:G) Borden gold project. Earlier this month Kapuskasing closed a $246,600 private placement.