Dual-listed Pensana Rare Earths has completed a further 34 holes of its 8 000 m drill programme at the Longonjo project, in Angola, the results of which confirm particularly high-grade intersections from surface in the area of proposed first mining.
The programme is in support of the bankable feasibility study work programmes for which the company is targeting an initial 15- to 20-year mine life based on the weathered zone mineralisation at Longonjo.
Infill drilling has confirmed a more than 6% increase in rare earth oxide (REO) in the surface weathered zone mineralisation, and this area of mineralisation remains open to the north and east. The company expects to upgrade the mineral resource to measured in this area for inclusion in the initial 15- to 20-year mine plan.
The first systematic drill testing of the potential immediately below the weathered zone mineralisation has also returned wide intersections of 2.5% to 3% REO, grades which are considered to be very encouraging and to add a second dimension to the Longonjo project beyond the initial mine life.
The mineralisation remains opens below the 80 m drill depth.
Drilling has also identified zones of high-grade weathered zone mineralisation from surface that is expected to increase average grades in this area of the proposed openpit and an updated mineral resource estimate will be reported in the current quarter once all remaining assay results have been received.
Executive director and COO Dave Hammond says the latest intersections from surface prove the continuity of the high-grade weathered mineralisation in the area that will be the focus of mining in the early years.
“The thick mineralised intersections returned from the fresh rock beneath the weathered zone, many of which remain open with depth, are very encouraging and support the potential to expand the project further on the successful completion of metallurgical test work,” he comments.