Radar Iron (ASX: RAD) has key iron ore assets in the highly prospective central Yilgarn region of Western Australia.
In total Radar holds around 1200 square kilometres of tenements in the province, with 120 kilometres of banded iron formations - which are largely unexplored for iron ore.
Radar Iron (ASX: RAD) has delivered an initial 2.1 million tonnes at 57.6% iron JORC Resource for the Muldoon Prospect at the Johnston Range Iron Ore Project.
Importantly, using a lower cut-off grade than the 55% used to estimate the maiden resource, the mineralisation inventory for Muldoon exceeds 3 million tonnes at 56% iron.
Jonathan Lea, managing director, said Johnston Range remains Radar’s key focus given the potential for hematite mineralisation, and this strategy is starting to create investor interest within the wider industry in Asia.
“Drilling to date has only tested the more obvious targets at Johnston Range. The presence of multiple hematite enriched BIF bands is very exciting for the company as extensive potential hematite targets are yet to be drill tested.”
The prospects tested lie around the Horse Well Anticline that defines the 40 kilometre long belt of BIF on the Johnston Range tenements, and also an adjoining BIF ridge on the Evanston project.
What is essentially very important and builds the anticipation of Johnston Range is that it is comprised of multiple bands of banded iron formation (BIF), providing a target of several hundred linear kilometres of BIF with potential for hematite enrichment.
This bodes well for Radar’s plans to progressively test these zones during 2012 with the aim of delineating additional resources at the project.
Lea told Proactive Investors today the delivery of the maiden resource for Muldoon was the first in a series of increased resource steps Radar Iron plans to take.
“The aim is to get up to 5 to 10 million tonnes by the end of the year and at that level we then start looking at Feasibility Studies with an aim to mining in 2014.”
Further upside is that Radar Iron expects high grades of above 50% iron to continue throughout the Johnstone Range Project.
“There are numerous other targets in the area which have similar potential and I think we will be drilling those out in coming months and looking at finding more Muldoons.
“I think that sort of grade in the high 50s will be certainly what we’re looking at.”
The company has access to more than 1,100 square kilometres of tenements with the potential to host iron ore mineralisation.
In early April, Radar Iron discovered two zones of hematite mineralisation at the Johnston Range Project.
The two adjacent hematite zones within the Muldoon Prospect are each up to 1 kilometre long and between 10 and 25 metres wide. Both have been tested to about 30 to 40 metres below surface.
Highlights from drilling at these zones include:
- 32 metres at 60.4% iron from 6 metres;
- 34 metres at 59.4% iron from surface; and
- 26 metres at 59.5% iron from 6 metres.
Lea previously said the results from the drill program confirm the continuity and economic grades of the two zones of hematite and would form the basis for a JORC Resource.
Infrastructure builds potential
A major plus for Radar is the expectation of access to rail and port infrastructure, supported by the potential low capital cost of development.
Road transport to the public access rail, 130 kilometres to the south, with export through the Port of Esperance remains the most likely path for transport.
The central Yilgarn district is the focus for a number of iron ore explorers and recent success has driven a commitment from the Western Australian Government to expand the Port of Esperance by 10 to 20 million tonnes per annum of capacity in the next few years.
The state owned railway nearby connects to the port and is open to all potential miners.
Improving the economics of the project, the mineralisation at Muldoon is at or near surface and extraction through shallow open pit mining may be possible.
Radar Iron anticipates a relatively low cost mining and crushing operation, possibly where a period of campaign mining is followed by crushing to minimise the need for extensive site infrastructure.
Lea said mining would most likely begin at an initial rate of around 1 million tonnes per annum.
“It is a simple mining process because it’s on surface, and using contract mining and contract crushing we expect a low capital cost and low operating cost delivering ore to the Port of Esperance in a couple of years time.”
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