Bryah Resources targets copper, gold and manganese in Bryah Basin
What does Bryah Resources do?
Bryah Resources Ltd (ASX:BYH) specialises in copper-gold and manganese exploration in Western Australia’s Bryah Basin. The company is run by Neil Marston, an accountant with 35 years of experience in the resources industry and other sectors. Marston has extensive experience in minerals exploration, capital raising, regulatory approvals and contract negotiations and was previously managing director of Horseshoe Metals Limited (ASX:HOR) (FRA:6HS).
Bryah’s new chairman Ian Stuart was managing director of Laconia Resources for five years and previously worked at Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX:MQG) where he gained extensive experience in capital markets. Stuart was a senior geologist at a number of Australian, African and Latin American resource sites, exploring for gold and base metals.
What does Bryah Resources own?
The key asset is the 720-square-kilometre Bryah Basin project in central Western Australia.
During the December quarter of 2018, the company completed its first drilling program in the Bryah Basin, discovering high-grade gold at Windalah prospect.
Highlighted intersections unveiled in the quarter were 5-metres grading 6.62 g/t gold from 79 metres in November, including 1-metre at 15.05 g/t gold; and 27 metres grading 1.43 g/t from 132 metres in October.
Earlier this month another significant prospective copper-gold anomaly was identified at the project’s Wongawar prospect.
Rock chip and soil sampling put the anomalism at a 700-metre contact length.
Assays of the rock chip samples were 1.17 g/t gold and 693 ppm copper.
Wongawar prospect was first identified as a prospective area in 2017 during regional mapping by a consultant geologist who collected four rock chip samples in 2018.
The best of the four samples had assayed 1.17 g/t gold and 233 ppm copper.
A historical intersection from 1990 at the prospect had featured 16 metres grading 0.18 g/t gold.
Rock chip samples from the Brumby Creek area at Bryah Basin project have returned up to 48.5% manganese, a drawcard Bryah hopes to follow up after receiving regulatory approval.
The nearby Black Hill and Black Caviar prospects recorded up to 50% manganese in rock chips.
Who is Bryah Resources’ partner?
Their project areas near the ghost town of Gabanintha are 43 kilometres south of the mining town of Meekatharra and 740 kilometres northeast of Perth.
Known previously as the 202-square-kilometre Gabanintha project, the area is now referenced as several projects, with Australian Vanadium’s sub-project known as The Australian Vanadium Project.
The partner holds vanadium, uranium, cobalt, chromium, titanium, lithium, tantalum, manganese and iron ore rights to the project.
Bryah holds the remaining mineral rights at its Gabanintha project, including to the battery metals of nickel and copper which showed in sulphide concentrates produced from flotation in May 2018 grades of 3.8% to 6.3% base metals, including 1.54-2.02% cobalt, 1.36-2.58% nickel and 0.82-1.7% copper.
Australian Vanadium’s maiden ore reserve is 18.24 million tonnes at 1.04% vanadium pentoxide (V2O5), comprising a proved reserve of 9.82 million tonnes at 1.07% V2O5 and a probable reserve of 8.42 million tonnes at 1.01% V2O5.
Eleven tenements are held by Australian Vanadium in pending mining lease application M51/878, consisting of 70% of the mineral resource, while the remaining 30% of the mineral resource is found at its wholly-owned exploration licence E51/843.
Australian Vanadium project’s square kilometre count is a larger 260 square kilometres to Bryah’s smaller Gabanintha project.
A pre-feasibility study (PFS) was produced for the Australian Vanadium Gabanintha project in December 2018 valuing it at a top-end of US$1.4 billion ($2 billion).
Australian Vanadium’s PFS concentrator plant design had included a sulphide flotation circuit that could extract the remaining minerals at the project which Bryah has rights to.
The partner expects to finish its latest drilling campaign in about April 2019 then start a pilot metallurgical test program.
Large diameter diamond core is being collected as test material for pilot-scale studies.
Bryah’s partner had a market capitalisation of about $39 million yesterday to Bryah’s $4.6 million market cap.
What projects can Bryah Resources evaluate?
West Perth-based Bryah also holds a one-year option to acquire the historical Horseshoe South Manganese Mine and the manganese mineral rights over another 154 square kilometres of Bryah Basin ground.
Earlier this month the company’s field geologists were mobilising to drill around the historical mine which is covered by a granted mining lease.
This mine historically produced about 1 million tonnes of manganese ore with the most recent Horseshoe South mining between 2008 and 2011 when Mineral Resources Limited (ASX:MIN) extracted more than 400,000 tonnes.
It was the largest manganese mine in Bryah Basin and just 1-kilometre north of the privately-owned Horseshoe Flats Manganese Mine which began production in 2017.
Bryah has a WA Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS) Program of Works (POW) approval that allows it to drill the project’s high-priority Brumby Creek manganese prospect and other targets at Horseshoe South Manganese Mine and Devils Hill.
There was 490,000 tonnes of manganese ore grading about 42% manganese mined historically at Horseshoe South mine and Horseshoe North mine on Horseshoe Range between 1948 and 1971.
Bryah has heritage clearance for its activities at Horseshoe South and its managing director was previously managing director of Horseshoe Metals.
Significant fundraising, strategic partnerships, asset buys or divestments
March quarter reporting season results
Upcoming milestones for Australian Vanadium and Bryah projects
Managing director Neil Marson notes Bryah prospectivity
“The sampling results seen at Wongawar prospect are very encouraging because they indicate a highly-prospective anomaly over a wide area in what is very unexplored terrain,” Bryah managing director Neil Marson said.
“I am extremely pleased to announce these very encouraging exploration results for Bryah, the latest in a series of excellent milestones for the company.
“Importantly, we are also preparing to drill some of our exciting manganese targets, now that all site access approvals are in place.”
Bryah managing director Neil Marson will deliver a 12.15pm address on day 2 of the March 27-28 Australian Energy & Minerals Investor Conference at Royal on the Park Brisbane.