Ardea wields major project status for nickel cobalt play
The Australian Federal Government has rolled out the red carpet for Ardea Resources by stamping major project status on its Kalgoorlie nickel and cobalt operation. The decision could help the developer haul its hefty bag of battery metals to market.
Notably, Ardea is eyeing an end product in the form of mixed hydroxide precipitate, or “MHP” that is the input of choice for the lithium-ion battery industry. The company is pursuing a definitive feasibility study into the construction of a 3.5 million tonne per annum plant to produce the MHP from its sizeable resource.
The company boasts its Kalgoorlie nickel project as hosting the largest nickel-cobalt resource in the developed world, coming in at a supreme 830 million tonnes of ore grading 0.71 per cent nickel and 0.046 per cent cobalt. Impressively, in tonnage and grade, the project even overshadows the Mt Keith deposit operated by the ASX’s largest market-capped company BHP.
To put the figures into perspective, the International Nickel Study Group forecasts the 2022 global demand for nickel will stand at about 3Mt. Alternatively, the company suggests it has enough nickel to produce 147 million electric vehicles.
The final bonus from major project status is that the company should expect to receive extra support, coordinated approvals and potential sources of funding to get the Kalgoorlie nickel project over the line.
Ardea confirms high-grade WA battery metal hits
Ardea Resources has confirmed some solid nickel-cobalt intercepts with bonus previously undocumented scandium and rare earths after re-testing historic drill pulps at its Kalpini Nickel project in WA. Noteworthy assay results included a 12 metre section grading 1.7 per cent nickel, 0.151 per cent cobalt and 28 grams per tonne scandium with 0.244 per cent total rare earth oxides and 1.32 per cent total rare metal oxides.
Other significant intercepts from the program include a 4m hit going 1.66 per cent nickel, 0.102 per cent cobalt and 40 g/t scandium from 29m downhole with 0.1297 per cent total rare earths and 0.7193 per cent total rare metal oxides. Elements included in the calculation of total rare earths included neodymium, praseodymium, lanthanum and cerium with total rare metals composed of titanium, yttrium, zircon, niobium, hafnium, tantalum and tungsten.
Ardea hopes the rare earths and rare metals mineralisation will provide potential by-product credits in addition to the cobalt and scandium mineralisation whilst processing its nickel deposits. Bench-scale metallurgical test work is currently being conducted to test the viability of the scheme.
Although the rare earths mineralisation encountered to date is about a tenth of the grade required to run a standalone rare earths operation it is still a valuable discovery as its essentially a necessary by-product of the exisiting nickel refinement process.
CREDIT- Bulls N Bears
Ardea unveils high-grade nickel-cobalt in WA
Minerals explorer Ardea Resources has unveiled high-grade, near surface nickel-cobalt mineralisation at its Highway deposit that forms part of its Kalgoorlie nickel project, or “KNP” in WA’s Eastern Goldfields. According to the company the results endorse its geological model and along with bench scale work will feed into an ongoing definitive feasibility study, or “DFS” that seeks to position the project as a globally significant source of battery metals.
Ardea is currently completing ongoing DFS works to assess the data surrounding its multi-deposit nickel and cobalt laterite deposits at Goongarrie Hub. The DFS is proposing a dual processing operation comprising of high pressure acid leaching or “HPAL,” and atmospheric leaching or “AL.”
In what appears to bode well for the Perth-based outfits prospects the Geological Survey of Western Australia has designated Ardea’s KNP as the biggest nickel deposit in Western Australia. The price of nickel is currently hovering levels not seen since 2011 at over US$20,000 per tonne.
Nickel forms an integral part of electric batteries. As the world moves towards decarbonised economies via batteries and other low carbon sources Ardea’s Kalgoorlie nickel project in WA’s Eastern Goldfields could find itself front and centre of the energy revolution.
CREDIT – Bulls ‘n’ Bears
Kalgoorlie Gold Mining set to hit ASX with Ardea gold assets
Kalgoorlie Gold Mining is set to pocket up to $12 million following the closing date of its initial public offering on the 26th of October. The company is set to list on the Australian Securities Exchange on 12 November and plans to use the money to follow up on some bonanza historical gold hits east of Kalgoorlie that inexplicably were never really run to ground. Kalgoorlie Gold will spin out of Ardea Resources who has been quietly amassing some serious gold tenure amongst its massive nickel holdings in WA.
The company will come to market with some seven gold projects scattered around WA that were previously housed under Ardea’s roof but did not receive enough love from Ardea given its principal focus on its massive nickel deposits near Menzies. The flagship Kalgoorlie Gold asset will be the Bulong-Taurus project about 40km east of Kalgoorlie in the renowned Bulong mineral district that has been giving up precious metal riches for decades.
It is hard to understand why hits like this were never properly followed up by past explorers. One possible explanation is that it was very close to the tenement boundary which is no longer an issue as Kalgoorlie Gold and Ardea have now brought multiple tenements together under the one roof in the region. If you talk to the Kalgoorlie locals about the Bulong area to the east of Kalgoorlie you will get a lot of knowing looks – particularly from the old-timers who are only too aware of the gold prospectivety of Bulong.
Ardea Resources tracks down high-grade nickel sulphides in WA
Ardea Resources looks to be on target with its drilling at Emu Lake, north east of Kalgoorlie in WA, recently intersecting high-grade nickel sulphides. The company’s exploration campaign is aimed at testing a series of deeper electromagnetic, or “EM” conductors along strike from the main Binti sulphide discovery, with drilling returning 4.8 metres at 1.44 per cent nickel, including 1.1m at a stunning 4.78 per cent nickel from 365.9m down-hole.
The successful intersection of strong nickel sulphide mineralisation more than 500m south of the main Binti zone now opens up the discovery along more than a kilometre of strike. Down-hole EM has also lit up targets at depth, hinting that the Emu Lake system may have a similar architecture to the neighbouring Silver Swan discovery west of Ardea’s ground.
Ardea’s Emu Lake project is 70km north-east of Kalgoorlie and sits just 35km to the east of the former Black and Silver Swan nickel mines in Western Australia. The company’s tenure covers an area of more than 240 sq.km and includes the nickeliferous ultramafic stratigraphy of the Kalpini greenstone belt, which extends for more than 20km through the project area
With Ardea having now proven its exploration model at Binti South and the company planning additional geophysical surveying and systematic extensional drilling to chase nickel lodes to depth, the company could be on a path to tracking down its own Silver Swan in the depths of Emu Lake.