A major geotechnical drilling and pitting programme is set to begin at the Songwe Hill rare earths development project, in Malawi, dual-listed Mkango Resources reported on Friday.
The company said that its management team, together with Malawian geotechnical engineering firm Geoconsult and South Africa-based geotechnical engineering firm Zutari are on site at the project.
The geotechnical test work programme will obtain samples from about 150 five-metre-deep pits and 22 twenty-metre drill holes and is being undertaken to confirm the soil and ground characteristics of the Songwe Hill project area.
The geotechnical samples are being tested and investigated in Malawi at the Geoconsult laboratories, in Lilongwe, and will provide the detailed geotechnical information that is required to finalise the detailed engineering design plans, prior to the completion of the definitive feasibility study in quarter one 2022.
“This major geotechnical investigation programme is currently employing and training over 120 local Malawian skilled and unskilled personnel.
“We are very proud to be working with leading Malawian companies such as Geoconsult and also Torrent, a local Blantyre-based plant hire company, promoting Malawian local content and community participation in the ongoing development of this exciting rare earths project,” said Mkango president Alexander Lemon.