Defense Metals (TXV:DEFN) has successfully completed the Phase 2 open pit diamond core and sonic infrastructure geotechnical drilling program at its Wicheeda Rare Earth Element (REE) Project near Prince George, Canada. This phase of drilling was conducted in collaboration with APEX Geoscience Ltd., under the guidance of SRK Consulting (Canada) Inc., a key consultant for the project’s ongoing preliminary feasibility study (PFS).
Craig Taylor, CEO of Defense Metals, commented in a press release: “We are pleased to have completed Phase 2 geotechnical programs and are encouraged that open pit geotechnical drilling has intersected significant widths of REE mineralized carbonatite within the western pit wall not previously known. Given the success of the prior ground radiometric surveys, the Company commissioned a 45 square-km airborne geophysical survey surrounding the Wicheeda REE Deposit, which we are now interpreting to guide property-wide exploration efforts. The ongoing Wicheeda Project PFS study remains on target for completion at the end of Q2 2024, and the data gathered as part of this drilling campaign will provide key inputs to inform the open pit slope design work by SRK.”
The company also engaged Precision GeoSurveys Inc. to conduct a 503 line-kilometre airborne magnetic and radiometric survey across 45 square kilometres of the Wicheeda Project. The collected data is currently being analyzed by Defense Metals’ technical team to identify exploration targets, with findings to be disclosed in due course.
Key accomplishments of the Phase 2 drilling program and future plans include:
– The drilling of six diamond drill holes, totalling 1,182 meters, within the Wicheeda REE Deposit pit shell. This includes four open pit geochemical drill holes (920 meters in total) and two near-mine exploration holes (262 meters in total).
– The south and west pit wall drill holes (WI23-81 and WI23-82) encountered significant widths of visibly REE mineralized dolomite carbonatite. The drill holes yielded core intervals of 54 meters and 21 meters, followed by a 65-meter core interval of xenolithic-dolomite carbonatite, respectively. The drilling of WI23-82 was particularly noteworthy for testing a new ground radiometric anomaly. Assay results from these drillings are pending.
– Completion of nine sonic overburden drill holes (160 meters in total) and 14 test pits (62 meters in total) for subsurface characterization. These will aid in planning for potential future infrastructure such as waste rock storage, mineralization stockpile, contact water pond, crusher, processing plant, and tailings storage facility locations.
– Preparation for the final Phase 3 sonic overburden and test pit campaign, involving 10 sonic overburden drill holes and 3 test pits, is underway. This phase is expected to be completed within four weeks.
Additionally, mineralized drill core samples from the Phase 2 pit geotechnical campaign have been sent to ALS Global in North Vancouver for analysis, with results anticipated in the coming months.
Defense Metals has also announced the appointment of Alex Heath as Vice President of Corporate Development. Mr. Heath holds a Bachelor of Commerce with honors from the University of British Columbia and is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Charterholder. His experience includes eight years at Salman Partners, where he served as Vice-President of Investment Banking, specializing in mining financings and merger and acquisition transactions. Since 2019, he has been part of the Discovery Group as a Strategic Advisor in Corporate Development and Investor Relations. Heath also serves as a director for several public mining companies.
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|Lincoln Minerals Limited