Monday 18th June 2018

Resource Clips


Posts tagged ‘Saville Resources Inc (SRE)’

Update: Quebec government, universities contribute to pre-feas studies for Commerce Resources’ Ashram rare earths project

June 5th, 2018

by Greg Klein | Updated June 5, 2018

With financial support from the Quebec government and academic expertise from two universities, Commerce Resources TSXV:CCE announced progress on the pre-feasibility studies underway for the Ashram rare earths deposit.

On June 5 the company reported positive results from advanced tailings optimization tests conducted by le Centre Eau Terre Environnement of l’Institut national de la recherche scientifique, a branch of l’Université du Québec. Now in the second year of a three-year project, the work gets funding from les Fonds de recherche du Québec—Nature et technologies and le ministère de l’Énergie et des Ressources naturelles. The lab work found no serious concerns, no acid generating potential and “strong indications of no metal-leaching potential,” Commerce stated.

The positive outcome benefited from “the inherent low-sulphide and non-acidic nature of the carbonatite host rock,” said company president Chris Grove.

The program also looked at the mineralogy of an Ashram fluorspar concentrate, a potential byproduct of the deposit. Initial findings brought “very encouraging” signs that recovery of monazite grains could upgrade the purity of the fluorspar concentrate and potentially increase the overall recovery of rare earth elements into the primary rare earth concentrate, Commerce added.

The news follows a May 31 annnouncement that l’Université Laval will conduct pilot plant metallurgical tests on Ashram material in a program backed by a $365,000 grant from le ministère de l’Économie, de la Science et de l’Innovation.

Quebec government funds metallurgical studies on Commerce Resources’ rare earths

Laval’s coat of arms: Total funding ranks
the school sixth out of Canada’s top 50
research universities.

Focusing on hydrometallurgical extraction of REEs and the use of new software to simulate their separation, the project will further develop Quebec expertise in REE separation and assess the economics of performing that work in the province. Results would help develop an alternative source of rare earths for global markets.

The work takes place as heightened awareness of critical minerals comes from an American strategy to reduce reliance on potentially unstable or unfriendly countries.

Both the hydromet process and simulator software have been tested in bench scale studies. Results brought recoveries surpassing 85% and showed positive correlation with the computer-simulated data. The current project further develops these studies at the pilot plant level.

With approximately two tonnes of Ashram material to work on, the project takes place at the SGS lab in Quebec City. The goal is to produce a high-grade concentrate, then a solution for partial separation into light, medium and heavy rare earth elements.

Beneficiaries of the project will be Quebec R&D and industry, as well as Commerce’s Ashram deposit as it progresses towards pre-feasibility. Previous government support for Ashram came from Ressources Québec, which invested $1 million in the company’s February 2017 private placement.

Looking at other critical minerals in safe jurisdictions, Commerce also holds the advanced-stage Blue River tantalum-niobium project in British Columbia, as well as an early-stage high-grade niobium prospect, conditionally subject to an earn-in by Saville Resources TSXV:SRE, on the Eldor property that hosts Ashram.

Read more about Commerce Resources.

Quebec government funds metallurgical studies on Commerce Resources’ rare earths

May 31st, 2018

This story has been updated and moved here.

Commerce Resources sees additional opportunity in U.S. critical minerals strategy

May 22nd, 2018

by Greg Klein | May 22, 2018

Taking another step to enhance national security, the U.S. Department of the Interior has formally accepted a draft list of 35 minerals deemed critical to the American economy and defence. Resulting from a presidential order to reduce reliance on essential raw materials from potentially unreliable or unfriendly sources, the list received 453 public comments after being compiled by the U.S. Geological Survey. The agenda now moves to the strategy stage, with a final report expected by August on approaches to cut dependence. Topics will include:

Commerce Resources sees additional opportunity in U.S. critical minerals strategy

  • the status of recycling technologies

  • alternatives to critical minerals

  • options for accessing critical minerals from allies and partners

  • a plan to improve geological mapping in the U.S.

  • recommendations to streamline lease permitting and review processes

  • ways to increase discovery, production and domestic refining of critical minerals

The Americans’ heightened interest in sourcing these necessities from allies and partners brings to mind companies like Commerce Resources TSXV:CCE, which has two advanced-stage Canadian properties hosting four critical minerals. At the company’s northern Quebec Eldor property, Commerce undertakes pre-feasibility studies on the Ashram deposit, hosting a rare earths resource with fluorspar byproduct potential. In central British Columbia, the company holds the Blue River tantalum-niobium deposit. Those two metals are also the subject of early-stage exploration on Eldor, a few kilometres from Ashram.

“Ultimately, what’s obvious from this critical minerals list is the U.S. government’s interest in cutting the Chinese umbilical cord,” points out company president Chris Grove. “A commonality that we at Commerce keep hearing is anxiety from companies in all of the major markets outside China—Japan, Korea, Germany, Austria, the U.S., France—companies in all these countries are concerned about future supplies of these commodities and they don’t want to have to depend on them from China. Essentially, the theme of this critical commodities list is getting it from somewhere besides China.”

And although China looms large, it’s not the only source of dubious reliability.

“There’s a huge increase in risk once you step outside North America. With our locations, we definitely benefit from that negation of jurisdictional risk.”

Mineralogy reduces another category of risk. “Looking at the specifics of our projects, both Ashram and Blue River are processed very positively with standard techniques,” Grove adds. “We’re not re-creating the wheel here, we’re not re-splitting the atom. Well-understood metallurgical processes work on both of our projects.

“Meanwhile we have ongoing optimization work on Ashram and also on the flowsheet for Blue River and there will be more data released in a timely manner on these potential successes.”

The company has early-stage prospects too, emphasized by especially high-grade niobium, along with tantalum, on the Miranna claims. Located on the same Eldor property hosting Ashram, the project has a 43-101 technical report now nearing completion. Subject to exchange approval, Miranna would then come under a 75% earn-in by Saville Resources TSXV:SRE.

USGS data accentuates American reliance on foreign sources for Commerce’s four minerals. Data from 2013 to 2016 shows the U.S. imported 78% of its rare earths from China, with much of the other 22% originating in Chinese-produced concentrates. China produced only 8% of American fluorspar imports, but Mexico supplied 71%. U.S. imports of tantalum minerals came 40% from Brazil and 26% from Rwanda, while America’s tantalum metal originated 23% in China and 12% in Kazakhstan. An overwhelming 72% of niobium, a crucial component to military, infrastructure and other uses, came from Brazil—most of it from a single company.

Read more about Commerce Resources here and here.

Proven provenance

April 20th, 2018

B.C. tantalum-niobium enhance Commerce Resources’ essential metals portfolio

by Greg Klein

Not just inadequate reserves but dubious origins threaten security of supply for strategic commodities. A prime example is niobium, a largely single-source product from CBMM in Brazil that gives one company and one country enormous potential power. Tantalum raises further concerns as it passes through shadowy supply lines that could obscure conflict sources. Both metals appear on the recent U.S. draft list of 35 critical minerals. And both appear in substantial quantities in one east-central British Columbia deposit.

That brings additional interest to Commerce Resources TSXV:CCE, best-known for its Ashram rare earths deposit in northern Quebec. While that project moves towards pre-feasibility, the company’s Blue River property in B.C. offers advantageous resources, metallurgy, infrastructure and economics for the rare metals age, says company president Chris Grove.

Industry has noticed, evident in the inquiries he’s received from end-users.

“We’re very excited about the new interest in Blue River,” he says. “Companies are looking at the provenance of these commodities and the new executive order signed by President Trump focuses on the origin of these critical commodities, so I think there’s a lot of opportunity to be seen for Blue River.”

The property’s Upper Fir deposit boasts a resource effective February 2015 based on 271 holes totalling 59,100 metres:

  • indicated: 48.41 million tonnes averaging 197 ppm Ta2O5 and 1,610 ppm Nb2O5 for 9,560 tonnes Ta2O5 and 77,810 tonnes Nb2O5

  • inferred: 5.4 million tonnes averaging 191 ppm Ta2O5 and 1,760 ppm Nb2O5 for 1,000 tonnes Ta2O5 and 9,600 tonnes Nb2O5

At this stage, processing looks good. Tantalum and niobium “occur within the minerals pyrochlore and ferrocolumbite and are amenable to conventional flotation and proven refining processes with estimated recoveries of 65% to 70%,” the 43-101 stated. “The industrial processes proposed for the production of high-quality tantalum and niobium products from the concentrates have not been tested using material from the Blue River project but are known processes that are not expected to be difficult to develop for the project.”

Tantalum and niobium enhance Commerce Resources’ essential metals portfolio

Those qualities alone encourage optimism for production costs, Grove points out. But a more recent development suggests even greater potential savings to both capex and opex. In February the company announced successful processing through a patented method called the Krupin Process. That followed months of work on a 1,300-kilogram sample of Blue River material at the Estonian lab of Alexander Krupin. An expert in tantalum and niobium recovery, his CV shows more than 35 years’ experience, including over 15 years processing high-grade concentrates of those two metals.

But it took another expert to confirm the results. To that end Commerce dispatched chairperson Axel Hoppe to Krupin’s lab. Formerly president of the Tantalum-Niobium International Study Center and a senior manager at H.C. Starck, a global producer of tantalum and niobium products, Hoppe “confirmed a very significant new development in processing that should save significantly on costs,” Grove says.

As a result, Commerce is now working on a definitive agreement to incorporate the Krupin Process at Blue River and also acquire worldwide rights to the method.

Covering 105,373 hectares, the property sits about 250 highway kilometres north of Kamloops, with access from another four klicks of gravel road. CN rail tracks and a parallel high-voltage transmission line cross the property’s western side, while a 20 MW run-of-river hydro plant operates adjacent to Blue River.

With niobium in a location like that, Blue River has attracted “huge interest from the steel sector,” Grove says. As electronics manufacturers take a closer look at some of the Democratic Republic of Congo mines that supply their cobalt, tantalum’s due for similar scrutiny, he adds.

Meanwhile, highly impressive niobium-tantalum assays from Commerce’s Quebec property have spawned an early-stage exploration project. Samples have graded as high as 4.24%, 4.3% and even 5.93% Nb2O5, as well as 1,040 ppm, 1,060 ppm and 1,220 ppm Ta2O5. The exceptional grades prompted Saville Resources TSXV:SRE to sign a 75% earn-in for the Niobium Claim Group on the Eldor property that also hosts Commerce’s advanced-stage Ashram rare earths deposit. Saville now has a 43-101 technical report underway. Dependent on TSXV approval of the deal and subsequent funding, the company plans drilling this year.

Interestingly it was Saville president Mike Hodge who staked the Blue River claims, after Dahrouge Geological Consulting brought the property to the attention of Commerce. Now a former Dahrouge geologist currently with the B.C. Geological Survey plans a public site visit to Blue River. Alexei Rukhlov will co-lead the June 22-24 field trip, an event open to participants of Resources for Future Generations 2018. Click here for more info.

Read more about Commerce Resources.

Read more about Saville Resources.

Saville Resources and Commerce Resources announce 4.3% niobium, 700 ppm tantalum from northern Quebec

April 12th, 2018

by Greg Klein | April 12, 2018

While preparations continue for this year’s drill program, additional high-grade niobium-tantalum sample assays have arrived from northern Quebec’s Niobium Claim Group. On April 12 Saville Resources TSXV:SRE and Commerce Resources TSXV:CCE reported grades as high as 4.3% Nb2O5 and 700 ppm Ta2O5 from the new project, situated on the latter company’s Eldor property. Saville has signed a 75% earn-in agreement on the claim group, which sits a few kilometres from Ashram, one of the Western world’s most advanced rare earths deposits. Commerce has that project advancing towards pre-feasibility.

Saville Resources and Commerce Resources announce 4.3% niobium, 700 ppm tantalum from northern Quebec

High grades from last fall’s sampling program have Saville
and Commerce looking forward to an upcoming drill campaign.

The results fall in line with previous high grades from the project’s Miranna area of 4.24% and an especially impressive 5.93% Nb2O5. Previous tantalum assays from Miranna have reached as high as 1,220 ppm, 1,060 ppm and 1,040 ppm Ta2O5.

The Northwest area gave up the richest sample, which reached 16.1% Nb2O5 and 7,540 ppm Ta2O5.

Collected by Commerce last year from the Miranna area, the most recent results show:

  • 4.3% Nb2O5, 240 ppm Ta2O5 and 13.4% P2O5

  • 2.75% Nb2O5, 130 ppm Ta2O5 and 7.6% P2O5

  • 2.24% Nb2O5, 290 ppm Ta2O5 and 11.6% P2O5

  • 0.69% Nb2O5, 350 ppm Ta2O5 and 8.8% P2O5

  • 0.75% Nb2O5, 660 ppm Ta2O5 and 14.2% P2O5

  • 1.18% Nb2O5, 590 ppm Ta2O5 and 13.1% P2O5

  • 1.16% Nb2O5, 700 ppm Ta2O5 and 0.65% P2O5

Miranna forms one of three prospective areas, along with the Northwest and Southeast areas. Miranna features a strongly mineralized boulder train which, a geophysical anomaly called the Miranna target suggests, might have its source partly on the property. The data indicates several overlapping boulder trains might also be present, with one possible source in the Southeast area.

Additional work shows the primary host mineral to be pyrochlore, the dominant source mineral for processing niobium and tantalum.

The upcoming drill program will focus on the Miranna target, as well as testing the Northwest and Southeast areas. Contingent on TSXV approval of Saville’s earn-in, the companies plan to file a 43-101 technical report on the project.

Earlier this month Saville closed the second tranche of a private placement totalling $289,700.

In addition to Ashram, Commerce holds the Blue River tantalum-niobium deposit in southeastern British Columbia, which reached PEA in 2011 and a resource update in 2013.

Read more about Saville Resources.

Read more about Commerce Resources.

Saville Resources, Commerce Resources prepare for drilling and 43-101 on Quebec niobium-tantalum project

April 5th, 2018

by Greg Klein | April 5, 2018

An early-stage but highly prospective rare metals project continues to advance as two companies identify drill targets and work towards an initial 43-101 technical report. On April 5 Saville Resources TSXV:SRE and Commerce Resources TSXV:CCE released an update for the Niobium Claim Group, an approximately 980-hectare package within Commerce’s northern Quebec Eldor property. Last January Saville inked an agreement for a 75% earn-in on the niobium-tantalum project that’s contingent on the 43-101 and TSXV approval.

Saville Resources, Commerce Resources prepare for drilling and 43-101 on Quebec niobium-tantalum project

Eldor also hosts Commerce’s Ashram project, one of the Western world’s most advanced rare earths deposits, currently moving towards pre-feasibility.

Sampling and drilling so far on the Niobium Claim Group have outlined three focal points called the Miranna, Southeast and Northwest areas. Previously reported niobium samples from the Miranna boulder train include an exceptional result of 5.93% Nb2O5, as well as 4.24% and 1.94% Nb2O5. Tantalum samples graded as high as 1,220 ppm, 1,060 ppm and 1,040 ppm Ta2O5. Phosphate assays reached up to 11.9%, 11.5% and 11.1% P2O5.

The team interprets the source of mineralization to be a geophysical anomaly at the boulder train’s apex. As yet undrilled, the location comprises a priority for rig activity.

Some standouts from previously reported drilling at the Northwest area showed:

  • 0.55% Nb2O5, 166 ppm Ta2O5 and 5% P2O5 over 13.15 metres

  • 0.46% Nb2O5, 60 ppm Ta2O5 and 4.6% P2O5 over 46.88 metres
  • (including 0.64% Nb2O5, 20 ppm Ta2O5 and 5.9% P2O5 over 9.95 metres)

A boulder sample with an especially impressive 16.1% Nb2O5 and 7,540 ppm Ta2O5 was collected at the Northwest area’s western edge, where glacial ice direction suggested a potential source within the claim group.

Some previous intercepts from Southeast showed:

  • 0.54% Nb2O5, 71 ppm Ta2O5 and 5.9% P2O5 over 26.1 metres

  • 0.57% Nb2O5, 145 ppm Ta2O5 and 8.9% P2O5 over 74.25 metres
  • (including 0.85% Nb2O5, 97 ppm Ta2O5 and 8.9% P2O5 over 19.54 metres)

  • 0.48% Nb2O5, 329 ppm Ta2O5 and 7.2% P2O5 over 33.93 metres

The Southeast results in particular call for additional infill and step-out drilling for further delineation and to consider completing a maiden resource, the companies stated. Geophysics provides further evidence of drill targets in all three areas.

Tests have identified the primary host mineral for niobium-tantalum to be pyrochlore, the dominant source mineral for processing those metals.

Saville also announced the closing of the second tranche of a private placement totalling $289,700.

Read more about Saville Resources.

Read more about Commerce Resources.

Saville Resources president Mike Hodge notes an exceptional grab sample assay from the newly acquired Miranna claims in northern Quebec

February 27th, 2018

…Read more

Tantalum-niobium recovery tests prompt Commerce Resources to negotiate world rights to process

February 20th, 2018

by Greg Klein | February 20, 2018

Best known for the advanced-stage Ashram rare earths deposit in Quebec, Commerce Resources’ (TSXV:CCE) rare metals interests also include the Upper Fir tantalum-niobium deposit in southeastern British Columbia. Now a proprietary processing method has brought successful results, leading the company to work on a definitive agreement to acquire global rights to the process.

Tantalum-niobium recovery tests prompt Commerce Resources to negotiate world rights to process

Upper Fir reached the PEA level in 2011
and a resource update in 2013.

Named after Alexander Krupin, an expert with 35 years’ experience in tantalum and niobium recovery, the method was applied to a 1,300-kilogram sample shipped to Krupin’s Estonia facility last year. A visit by Commerce chairperson Axel Hoppe, another internationally recognized expert in tantalum and niobium, verified the Krupin Method’s success. As a result, the parties now have a definitive agreement under negotiation.

Part of Commerce’s Blue River property, Upper Fir reached PEA in 2011. A 2013 resource update used a tantalum price of $381 per kilogram for an estimated:

  • indicated: 48.41 million tonnes averaging 197 ppm Ta2O5 and 1,610 ppm Nb2O5 for 9,560 tonnes Ta2O5 and 77,810 tonnes Nb2O5

  • inferred: 5.4 million tonnes averaging 191 ppm Ta2O5 and 1,760 ppm Nb2O5 for 1,000 tonnes Ta2O5 and 9,600 tonnes Nb2O5

Adjacent to a 20-MW run-of-river electricity project, the 105,373-hectare property has road, rail and power lines.

More niobium-tantalum potential, this time early-stage, has been identified on Commerce’s Eldor property in northern Quebec, which hosts the Ashram rare earths deposit. Last month the company announced that Saville Resources TSXV:SRE had taken on a 75% earn-in to work the property’s niobium claims, where an exceptional sample assay of 5.9% Nb2O5 sparked additional attention in the property.

Ashram remains Commerce’s focus, however, as one of the most advanced REE projects outside China moves towards pre-feasibility. In December the company announced new research that could further streamline the project’s metallurgy, already benefitting from host minerals that are well understood and amenable to conventional processing.

Read more about Commerce Resources.

Zimtu’s advantages

January 20th, 2018

Opportunities come calling as Zimtu Capital builds junior companies’ potential

by Greg Klein

With equity holdings in a wide range of juniors, Zimtu Capital TSXV:ZC goes well beyond the prospect generator model to help nurture and grow the companies that comprise its assets. Looking at just a few examples, they can be exploring early-stage minerals projects, progressing an advanced-stage rare earths deposit or generating revenue through disruptive technology. Zimtu helps build the companies with administrative, promotional, technical, legal and financial expertise that ranges from prospectors in the bush to market insiders in Europe and Asia.

Opportunities come calling as Zimtu Capital builds junior companies’ potential

The ZimtuADVANTAGE program additionally offers companies a number of other marketing strategies, including extensive social media coverage and the ZimtuADVANTAGE app. The result is wider exposure and therefore greater investor awareness about each participant.

The breadth of Zimtu’s support brings each company a level of expertise, sophistication and prominence not easily obtained by smaller companies. To further understand the approach, take a look at some Zimtu equity holdings.

 

Meet the ZimtuADVANTAGE companies

 

92 Resources TSXV:NTY—Lithium in the NWT and Quebec, frac sand in B.C.

Metallurgy as well as field work make 92 Resources’ (TSXV:NTY) Hidden Lake hard rock lithium property a standout among early-stage projects. Grab samples from the highway-accessible location 40 kilometres east of Yellowknife have graded as high as 1.86% Li2O, while channel samples on pegmatite outcrops have reached up to 1.58% over 8.78 metres and 2.57% over 0.75 metres. There’s tantalum too, including a sample of 233 ppm Ta2O5 over 1 metre.

Phase I metallurgical tests, meanwhile, produced a high-grade concentrate of 6% to 6.5% Li2O, with recovery rates of 80% to 85% using conventional methods.

In eastern British Columbia, the company holds the Golden frac sand project next door to Northern Silica’s Moberly silica operation. 92 Resources also picked up three Quebec lithium properties. One of them yielded a 7.32% Li2O grab sample on an initial visit.

92 Resources began the new year by closing an oversubscribed private placement of $1.14 million.

Read an interview with 92 Resources CEO Adrian Lamoureux.

 

Arctic Star Exploration TSXV:ADD—Diamonds in Finland, critical minerals in B.C.

The Timantti project attracted Arctic Star Exploration’s (TSXV:ADD) experienced team of diamond explorers to a mining-friendly Finnish region with enviable infrastructure and a geological shield hosting two world-class Russian mines. Previous work showed 111 microdiamonds from 52.7 metres of historically extracted core and another 58 from an 18.9-kilogram sample. In November the company began an ambitious program of geophysics, till sampling and drilling to extract a 500-kilogram core sample from each of two especially promising kimberlites.

Arctic Star’s other diamond interests include its drill-ready Stein project in Nunavut and the Diagras JV in the NWT’s Lac de Gras region. An intriguing departure from gemstones, however, is the company’s Cap property in B.C., home to an exceptionally rare carbonatite-syenite complex that offers potential for several commodities. Assays released last fall from sampling and a single drill hole showed “highly anomalous” niobium, rare earths and phosphate grades.

In late November the company closed oversubscribed private placements totalling $1.69 million.

Read an interview with Arctic Star chairperson Patrick Power.

 

Belmont Resources TSXV:BEA—Lithium in Nevada

Opportunities come calling as Zimtu Capital builds junior companies’ potential

Deep-sensing geophysics will follow
Belmont Resources’ 2017 drill campaign.

Sixty-five kilometres from Clayton Valley, Belmont Resources TSXV:BEA sees encouraging signs of similar geology at its Kibby Basin lithium project. Beginning imminently will be an especially deep-sensing electromagnetics survey to help identify Phase II drill targets.

Last year’s two-hole program extracted core samples grading between 70 ppm and 200 ppm Li2O. Thirteen of 25 samples surpassed 100 ppm, “indicating that the sediments could be a potential source of lithium for the underlying aquifers.”

The company interprets gravity survey data to suggest a closed basin covering 400 hectares and reaching at least 1.5 kilometres in depth, sufficiently large to develop layers that could act as aquifers.

A more recent acquisition, the Mid Corner-Johnson Croft property in New Brunswick comes with historic, non-43-101 sample results for zinc, copper and cobalt. But it hasn’t seen modern geophysics. Belmont’s portfolio also includes a 50% interest in two Saskatchewan uranium properties.

The company closed an oversubscribed private placement of $312,200 In December.

Read an interview with Belmont Resources CFO/director Gary Musil.

 

Castle Silver Resources TSXV:CSR/Canada Cobalt Works—Cobalt in Ontario

Update: Effective February 23, 2018, Castle Silver Resources begins trading as Canada Cobalt Works TSXV:CCW.

Historically, high-grade silver was the attraction but the northern Ontario region of Cobalt got that name for a reason. It’s in and around that area that Castle Silver Resources TSXV:CSR—soon to be renamed Canada Cobalt Works—seeks one of the essential energy metals. Underground mini-bulk sampling at the company’s Castle flagship brought assays up to 3.1% cobalt. More assays are pending from last year’s sampling and 22-hole, 2,405-metre drill campaign at the former mine.

Eighty kilometres southeast, an initial program at the company’s Beaver project collected three hand-cobbed samples, all exceeding 4% cobalt with impressive nickel grades, silver and some gold.

In November Castle Silver signed a provisional milling agreement to locate a plant on its property to process material from Granada Gold Mine’s (TSXV:GGM) project about 200 kilometres away. Additionally Castle Silver sees potential in its Re-2OX proprietary metallurgical process to produce cobalt concentrate.

The company closed a private placement of $1.03 million in mid-January.

 

Commerce Resources TSXV:CCE—Rare earths in Quebec, tantalum-niobium in B.C.

Opportunities come calling as Zimtu Capital builds junior companies’ potential

Amid increasing concern about critical minerals supply,
Commerce Resources’ Ashram rare earths deposit
benefits from geology, metallurgy and location.

An advanced-stage rare earths project endowed with magnet feed elements, amenable to conventional processing and moving towards pre-feasibility in a mining-friendly province—that begins to describe Commerce Resources’ (TSXV:CCE) Ashram deposit in northern Quebec.

Obviously waiting for an update is the 2012 resource, which used a 1.25% cutoff for this near-surface deposit:

  • measured: 1.6 million tonnes averaging 1.77% total rare earth oxides and 7.7% CaF2

  • indicated: 28 million tonnes averaging 1.9% TREO and 5.9% CaF2

  • inferred: 220 million tonnes averaging 1.88% TREO and 4.5% CaF2

The company has sunk about 9,200 metres since then, hitting high grades within carbonatite host rocks containing minerals amenable to well-known processing methods. Showing a superior distribution of magnet feed REOs, Ashram’s metallurgical studies continue to streamline the flowsheet for a high-grade concentrate, also finding potential for a fluorspar byproduct. The REE-hungry world has noticed, with companies like Solvay, Mitsubishi, Treibacher, BASF, DKK, Albemarle, Blue Line and others requesting samples.

Turning to other critical minerals, Commerce’s Blue River/Upper Fir tantalum-niobium deposit in southeastern B.C. reached PEA in 2011 and a resource update in 2013.

Read more about Commerce Resources.

 

Emerita Resources TSXV:EMO—Zinc in Spain, zinc and lithium in Brazil

An acquisitive nature could position this company to take part in zinc’s ascendency. In October Emerita Resources TSXV:EMO joined a 50/50 JV on the Plaza Norte property in northern Spain. The new turf hosts extensions of the past-producing Reocin mine, which gave up 62 million tonnes averaging 11% zinc and 1.4% lead up to 2003. Plaza Norte’s historic, non-43-101 drill results include 9.72% zinc over 18.96 metres and 7.05% over 8.2 metres. As project operator, Emerita has a review underway of the property’s extensive previous data. The company’s JV partner, the Aldesa Group, is a specialized construction and infrastructure firm operating globally.

In Brazil, Emerita holds a 100% option on the Litio project adjacent to the Companhia Brasileira de Litio lithium mine. Emerita’s initial field work has found pegmatite dykes similar to those next door. Other potential acquisitions include the Salobro zinc project in Brazil, along with Paymogo and Aznalcollar, two zinc properties in Spain.

Last month the company closed an oversubscribed private placement totalling $4.24 million, with funds earmarked for Plaza Norte and Salobro.

 

Georox Resources TSXV:GXR—Conventional oil and gas in western Canada

A non-binding LOI signed in December would bring Georox Resources TSXV:GXR a 16,146-hectare Saskatchewan acquisition with 97% oil production and an average working interest of 96.6%. Average daily net production estimates for the first nine months of last year came to 1,415 boe/d. “The oil pools have significant reactivation, waterflood implementation and infill drilling potential,” Georox stated. Subject to due diligence and approvals, the parties expect to consummate by the end of February for a price of $4.5 million.

The company offered a private placement earlier this month of up to $700,000.

 

Glance Technologies CSE:GET—Bringing the newest technology to consumer transactions

Connecting smartphone users with merchants and service providers, Glance Technologies’ (CSE:GET) Glance Pay system goes beyond fast payments to provide marketing, targeted coupons, customer feedback, in-merchant messaging, custom rewards and fraud protection.

At the forefront of blockchain developments, Glance Technologies earlier this month announced a definitive agreement with Cannabis Big Data Holdings to provide technology allowing marijuana retailers and producers to handle cryptocurrency transactions. That’s one example of licensing agreements with the cannabis, fitness and wellness, tourist and foreign student markets.

Late last month Glance Technologies closed a bought deal totalling $11.05 million, boosting the company’s treasury to over $17.4 million.

 

Golden Dawn Minerals TSXV:GOM—Q2 gold-copper production in B.C.

Opportunities come calling as Zimtu Capital builds junior companies’ potential

Having finished dewatering, Golden Dawn prepares to
restart underground operations at southern B.C.’s Lexington mine.

With trial mining set to begin within months, Golden Dawn Minerals TSXV:GOM seeks to revive southern B.C.’s historic Greenwood mining camp. The company holds a cluster of past-producers within 20 kilometres of its Greenwood mill, a 212-tpd facility expandable to 400 tpd that was built in 2007 and put on care and maintenance the following year. The local infrastructure’s condition inspires the company to enter production without de-risking at the feasibility level.

Top priority goes to Lexington, which produced 5,486 ounces of gold, 3,247 ounces of silver and 860,259 pounds of copper in 2008. Two other frontrunners are the Golden Crown gold-copper project and May Mac silver-gold-polymetallic project, both nearby former mines that underwent drilling last year. Meanwhile Golden Dawn continues to expand its portfolio, both in the Greenwood area and farther north.

The company’s most recent financing closed this month on $337,500.

Read more about Golden Dawn Minerals.

 

Kapuskasing Gold TSXV:KAP—Newfoundland copper and zinc

The property’s first drill program since the 1960s barely whetted Kapuskasing Gold’s (TSXV:KAP) appetite for copper exploration at its Lady Pond flagship in northern Newfoundland. Now backed by new intel, the company plans to return for another attack this year. An historic, non-43-101 estimate gives the project’s Sterling prospect about one million tonnes averaging 1% copper that’s open in all directions. Grab samples released in October showed up to 9.03% copper for the Twin Pond prospect, 7.19% copper for Sterling and 1.54% copper with cobalt and silver for the Lady Pond prospect.

Located 94 kilometres by road from a Rambler Mining and Metals TSXV:RAB base metals mill, the Lady Pond project can be reached by logging roads and ATV.

On Newfoundland’s Great Northern Peninsula, Kapuskasing picked up the Daniel’s Harbour property, host to the former Teck mine that produced around seven million tonnes averaging 7.8% zinc from 1975 to 1990. The past-producer’s Mississippi Valley Type deposit suggests the potential for additional resources appearing in clusters.

While in the Great Northern Peninsula, Kapuskasing staked another 1,625 hectares to move in on the burgeoning Gunners Cove gold area play. The company closed private placements totalling $115,000 in August, following a $201,200 placement that closed in June.

Read an interview with Kapuskasing president/CEO Jon Armes.

 

King’s Bay Resources TSXV:KBG—Nickel-cobalt in Labrador, copper-cobalt in Newfoundland

An unexpected benefit of the new Trans-Labrador Highway was recognized by a prospector who sampled roadside copper and cobalt with some nickel and silver. King’s Bay Resources TSXV:KBG moved onto the virgin turf with a more systematic field program, airborne VTEM and last autumn’s initial two-hole program. Although collared over 150 metres apart, each hole found mineralization over wide intercepts, encouraging plans for further drilling following geostatistical and structural analysis.

Meanwhile Phase I field work at the company’s Trump Island project in northern Newfoundland collected 15 grab samples, four of them grading over 1% copper and between 272.3 ppm and 1,213.6 ppm cobalt. One sample underwent an additional ore grade analysis, showing 6.07% copper, 300 ppm cobalt and 14.4 ppm silver. Follow-up exploration is slated for spring.

King’s Bay offered a $250,000 private placement in September that followed financings that closed on $402,000 the previous month.

 

MGX Minerals CSE:XMG—Commodities and technology for energy and industry

As if trying to fuel the energy revolution single-handedly, MGX Minerals CSE:XMG holds a portfolio bursting with nearly three dozen projects. In Alberta and Utah the company counts 20 lithium properties in the exploration state and two more undergoing well-testing. B.C. properties include three silicon projects and eight magnesium projects. Unsated, in November the company opened a satellite office in Chile to evaluate opportunities there.

Some project highlights include the Driftwood Creek magnesium property in B.C., now moving towards a preliminary economic assessment. Paradox Basin in Utah has exploration underway for oil, gas, lithium and other brine minerals. A 2,000-metre drill program has just begun at the company’s 20%-held Case Lake lithium project in Ontario, following a recently completed 5,400-metre campaign.

Among a number of technological developments, MGX claims a breakthrough for zinc-air flow batteries by avoiding dendrite damage, “the single most significant hurdle” in the batteries’ development. With its subsidiary ZincNyx Energy Solutions, the company’s now working on final commercial design for mass production of its scalable 20 kWh zinc-air mass storage battery.

On another technological front, MGX partners with its 46%-held PurLucid Treatment Solutions on a patented process for brine treatment and selective lithium recovery.

Activity like that doesn’t come cheap. In December MGX closed private placements totalling $12.9 million. The previous month MGX and PurLucid won federal/provincial grants totalling up to $8.2 million for their oilpatch water treatment system.

 

Mountain Boy Minerals TSXV:MTB—Exploring the treasures of B.C.’s Golden Triangle

Opportunities come calling as Zimtu Capital builds junior companies’ potential

Rugged but rich terrain attracts Mountain
Boy Minerals to B.C.’s Golden Triangle.

With a stake in several northwestern B.C. properties, Mountain Boy Minerals TSXV:MTB took part in two joint-ventured drill programs last year, along with geophysics on two 100%-held properties. Results so far from the company’s 35%-held Red Cliff gold project show high grades over wide intervals as drilling followed a mineralized system over two kilometres. More assays are pending from the 51-hole program.

Another 14 holes went into Mountain Boy’s 20%-held Silver Coin, hitting high-grade gold and finding a new gold zone. Again, the company’s awaiting further lab results. A 2011 resource gives the project measured and indicated totals of 842,416 ounces gold, 4.46 million ounces silver and 91.2 million pounds zinc. The inferred numbers come to 813,273 ounces gold, 6.7 million ounces silver and 128 million pounds zinc.

Moving closer to the drill stage are two contiguous 100%-held silver-base metals projects, BA and Surprise Creek. Trench assays from late 2016 suggest polymetallic promise with high-grade zinc as well as silver and lead. Following previous drilling, metallurgical tests produced a barite concentrate that exceeds industry standards for this mineral essential to oil and gas exploration.

Mountain Boy offered a private placement of up to $300,000 in October.

Read an interview with Mountain Boy Minerals chairperson René Bernard.

 

ParcelPal Technology CSE:PKG—Online shopping with fast delivery

Opportunities come calling as Zimtu Capital builds junior companies’ potential

ParcelPal’s “Get Anything functionality” adds
fast delivery to shop-by-phone transactions.

Order via smartphone app and get quick delivery at home, work or elsewhere—that’s the disruption ParcelPal Technology CSE:PKG brings to merchants and courier services. Retail, liquor and especially restaurants are currently the partner businesses as ParcelPal expands throughout the Greater Vancouver region. The company says its “Get Anything functionality” allows consumers to “order virtually anything and have it delivered in an hour or less.”

Just six months in operation, the company sees positive business and consumer response, with 3,000 app downloads in October and November, and repeat clients. Future goals include expansion in other major Canadian cities, and eventually the U.S. and abroad.

ParcelPal closed an oversubscribed private placement of $1.65 million in mid-January.

 

Rockcliff Metals TSXV:RCLF—A gold-VMS camp in Manitoba

It might be said that Rockcliff Metals TSXV:RCLF picks up where Hudbay Minerals TSX:HBM leaves off. Rockcliff assembled its portfolio largely by acquiring non-core Hudbay assets in Manitoba’s Flin Flon-Snow Lake region. As a result Rockcliff holds interests in five gold projects, two copper-polymetallic deposits with resource estimates and three zinc deposits with historic, non-43-101 estimates. All lie within trucking distance of two Hudbay processing facilities.

With three projects active last year, Rockcliff updated its Talbot resource in December, announcing an inferred 150 million pounds copper, 130.4 million pounds zinc, 241,000 ounces gold and 3.8 million ounces silver that’s open in all directions.

Recent stepout drilling brought high-grade zinc results from Bur, moving the project from historic towards 43-101 resource stage. Currently the non-43-101 numbers show an indicated 1.05 million tonnes averaging 8.6% zinc and 1.9% copper, along with an inferred 302,000 tonnes averaging 9% zinc and 1.4% copper, as well as some silver and gold.

Polymetallic VMS isn’t Snow Lake’s only attraction. Among Rockcliff’s gold properties is the former Laguna mine, where induced polarization and resistivity found 17 anomalies over a trend that hasn’t been drilled since 1944.

In August Rockcliff closed an oversubscribed private placement of $1.35 million.

Read more about Rockcliff Metals here and here.

 

Saville Resources TSXV:SRE—Niobium-tantalum in Quebec

Strong sample grades with an outstanding 5.9% niobium pentoxide enticed Saville Resources TSXV:SRE onto Commerce Resources’ Eldor property earlier this month. While the latter company focuses on bringing its rare earths project to pre-feasibility, Saville took on a 75% earn-in on the Eldor niobium claims, enthusiastic about their potential for critical minerals.

Out of 64 samples collected by Commerce, 40 exceeded 0.5% Nb2O5, 16 of them surpassing 1%. Assays also showed significant tantalum, phosphate and rare earths numbers. Among previous drill results were 0.46% Nb2O5 over 46.88 metres and 0.55% over 26.1 metres (including 0.78% over 10.64 metres).

Results also show niobium-tantalum occurring within the mineral pyrochlore, the world’s dominant source for those critical elements. Eldor’s pyrochlore shows a relatively course grain size, a positive prognosis for metallurgy.

At Saville’s other northern Quebec asset, Covette’s sampling and geophysics show potential for base and precious metals.

In December the company offered private placements totalling up to $500,000.

Read more about Saville Resources.

 

Voltaic Minerals TSXV:VLT—Lithium from brine and from wastewater too

Voltaic Minerals TSXV:VLT sees three key distinctions to its Green Energy lithium project in Utah. A review of extensive historic oil and gas exploration data indicates the property’s brine to be over-saturated with 40% minerals in 60% water, suggesting potential for a wide range of minerals. The brine also faces immense pressure and high temperature, two factors that would aid extraction. The 1,683-hectare property has proximity to road, rail and power.

But apart from the Green Energy project, Voltaic takes another approach to sourcing lithium. The company has engaged Whittier Filtration, a division of global leader Veolia Water Technologies, to develop marketable processes for extracting lithium from wastewater taken from commercial and industrial sites. The companies expect to report bench scale tests soon.

Critical Quebec commodities

January 11th, 2018

Saville Resources moves into Commerce Resources’ niobium-tantalum target

by Greg Klein

A rare metal find on a property hosting a rare earths deposit becomes a project of its own under a new agreement between two companies. With a 75% earn-in, Saville Resources TSXV:SRE can now explore the niobium claims on Commerce Resources’ (TSXV:CCE) Eldor property in northern Quebec, where the latter company advances its Ashram rare earths deposit towards pre-feasibility.

Saville Resources moves into Commerce Resources’ niobium-tantalum target

A map illustrates the mineralized boulder
train’s progress, showing its presumed source.

Grab samples collected by Commerce on a boulder train about a kilometre from the deposit brought assays up to 5.9% Nb2O5. “That’s right off the charts,” enthuses Saville president Mike Hodge. “People in the niobium space hope for 1%—5.9% is excellent.”

He’s no newcomer to the space or even to the property. Hodge helped stake Commerce’s tantalum-niobium deposit on southern British Columbia’s Blue River property, which reached PEA in 2011.

“I did a lot of the groundwork for Commerce in the Valemount-Blue River area and I was one of the first guys on the ground at the camp that now supports Ashram,” he points out. “I’ve been involved with these two properties since 1999.” That’s part of a career including field experience on over 25 projects as well as raising money for junior explorers.

Miranna’s grab samples brought tantalum too, with a significant 1,220 ppm Ta2O5. Forty of the 65 samples graded over 0.5% Nb2O5, with 16 of them surpassing 1%.

The company describes the sampling area as a “strongly mineralized boulder train with a distinct geophysical anomaly at its apex.”

The 980-hectare Eldor Niobium claims have also undergone drilling on the Northwest and Southeast zones, where some wide intervals gave up 0.46% Nb2O5 over 46.88 metres and 0.55% over 26.1 metres (including 0.78% over 10.64 metres).

Samples from Miranna and the Southeast zone also show that niobium-tantalum occurs within pyrochlore, described by Saville as the dominant source mineral for niobium and tantalum in global mining. That’s the case, for example, at Quebec’s Niobec mine, one of the world’s three main niobium producers, with 8% to 10% of global production. Moreover, pyrochlore on the Saville project “is commonly visible to the naked eye, thus indicating a relatively course grain size, which is a favourable attribute for metallurgical recovery,” the company added.

Hodge already has a prospective drill target in mind. “I pulled the rig around with a Cat for a lot of the holes on Ashram itself so I’m very familiar with the ground. We’d of course do more prospecting and try to prove up some more numbers while we’re drilling.”

Saville Resources moves into Commerce Resources’ niobium-tantalum target

Should Saville find success, a ready market would be waiting. The company cites niobium demand growth forecasts of 7.66% CAGR from 2017 to 2021. A December U.S. Geological Survey report lists niobium and tantalum among 23 minerals critical to American security and well-being.

The country relies on foreign exports for its entire supply of both minerals, according to an earlier USGS study. From 2012 to 2015, 80% of America’s total niobium imports came from Brazil, where one mine alone produces 85% to 90% of global supply. Looking at tantalum imports during that period, the U.S. relied on China for 37% and Kazakhstan for another 25%. A troubling source of tantalum remains the Democratic Republic of Congo, from where conflict minerals reach Western markets through murky supply chains.

Days after the USGS released its December study, American president Donald Trump ordered a federal strategy “to ensure secure and reliable supplies of critical minerals.” Although he emphasized the need for domestic deposits and supply chains, Trump also called for “options for accessing and developing critical minerals through investment and trade with our allies and partners.”

Meanwhile Saville also sees potential in Covette, the company’s other northern Quebec property. Historic, non-43-101 grab samples reported up to 4.7% molybdenum, with some bismuth, lead, silver and copper. A 1,402-line-kilometre VTEM survey in late 2016 found prospectivity for base and precious metals. “The VTEM and some sampling that we did indicates that drilling could find something valuable,” Hodge says. “Although it is early-stage, the Geotech guys that did the VTEM survey said they hadn’t seen targets like that all year.”

Still, “the niobium claims are my first priority,” Hodge emphasizes. “I’m very excited about this. I believe we can have a winning project here.”

Subject to approvals, a 75% interest in the new property would call for $25,000 on signing, another $225,000 on closing and $5 million in work over five years. Commerce retains a 1% or 2% NSR, depending on the claim, with Saville holding a buyback option.

Last month the company offered private placements totalling up to $500,000, with insiders intending to participate.

Read more about the U.S. critical minerals strategy.