URANIUM PROJECT (YILGARN-AVON JOINT VENTURE)
The Yilgarn-Avon Project (YAJV) is a 80.8:19.2 joint venture between Mindax Energy Pty Ltd (a fully owned subsidiary of Mindax Limited) and partner Quasar Resources Pty Ltd, an affiliate of Heathgate Resources, the owner/operator of the Beverley uranium mine in South Australia. Heathgate are a world leader in the environmentally desirable and low cost In Situ Recovery (ISR) uranium extraction technology. Mindax are managers of the YAJV.
The YAJV was formed in 2006 in response to hydro-geochemical research conducted by CRC-LEME in the Yilgarn- Avon region of WA. This research revealed areas of extremely high concentrations of dissolved uranium in particular drainages within areas of Western Australia.
The YAJV currently holds 15 exploration licenses along the dominant paleochannel (Figures 1 & 2). These exploration licenses cover approximately 275km of drainage which equates to almost 75% of the available paleochannel. The YAJV can now confirm that these paleochannels contain significant amounts of sandstone hosted uranium mineralisation.
Mindax has discovered a new Greenfield uranium province near Mukinbudin in the Yilgarn Avon region. A maiden 3.2Mlb JORC resource has been established from scout drilling. There is considerable prospectivity in this area. Scout drilling in 2013 located four new high grade targets at Mukinbudin.
The Mineral Resource for the uranium mineralisation at the Mukinbudin Project was estimated to be 3.2Mlbs at 0.02% U3O8 using a 100ppm (0.01%) U3O8 cut–off. This resource is classified as Inferred and has been reported in accordance with the JORC Code 2004. The mineral estimate currently consists of 1.1Mlbs at 0.03% U3O8 at the Jindarra Prospect and 2.1Mlbs at 0.02% U3O8 at the Yandegin Prospect. This is the first time a uranium resource has been estimated on a prospect in this area of WA and is an excellent starting point for the YAJV to begin building a significant inventory of uranium pounds. It should be noted that both the Jindarra and Yandegin Prospects have the potential to increase as the mineralisation has not been closed off. Table 1 shows the Mineral Resource as estimated by Optiro. Tables 2 and 3 provide a breakdown of the resources at Jindarra and Yandegin at a variety of cut-off grades.
The amount of drilling now completed within the Mukinbudin Project and the successful identification of two mineralised prospects has allowed an Exploration Target** (“ET”) to be devised for the Mukinbudin Project. This target was set at 10 to 25 million pounds U3O8 at a grade of 0.05% - 0.15% U3O8 and is currently under review. This exploration target has been set to accurately define the realistic potential that the project has to host mineralisation and the economic parameters (pounds & grade) required for a successful mining project. Not enough is currently known about the Kellerberrin or Quairading Projects to add their potential to this ET. Sandstone hosted uranium mineralisation is the deposit style being targeted.
Numerous other sandstone hosted uranium deposits have been defined in Australia and sandstone hosted uranium accounts for 45% of current world supply and is increasing. While the current resources have been calculated as tabular bodies the high grade intercepts and distribution of mineralisation would suggest that roll-front style mineralisation is present in the paleochannel and is likely to be defined during detailed infill drilling. These ‘roll-fronts’ have the ability to significantly improve the deposit grade and will be actively targeted to realise the ET in terms of both pounds and grade.
It is important to note that all of the YAJV projects are completely greenfields projects and have not been developed off historic uranium exploration activities (i.e. pre 1980’s drilling). Broad spaced scout drilling (3 - >5km spaced traverses) along the paleochannel through the Mukinbudin Project consistently shows anomalous uranium. It is therefore likely that there is scope for significant upside to the projects as further exploration is completed and a better understanding of the geology and mineralisation are developed.
Early geological analysis suggests that it is likely that the mineralisation so far encountered in the paleochannel will be suitable for In Situ Recovery (ISR) mining. YAJV partner Quasar Resources Pty Ltd is an affiliate of Heathgate Resources Pty Ltd, the operator of the Beverley Uranium mine in South Australia. Uranium is extracted at the Beverly mine utilising the ISR method of which Heathgate are a world leader in the technology. The method of extraction of the uranium mineralisation has huge benefits to the environment and local communities over traditional open pit mining. A particular benefit of ISR is the very minimal surface disturbance (negligible dust and re-contouring of the surface). ISR also has the benefit of being able to return the land to prior use at the completion of mining and rehabilitation works in a timely manner.