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Anson Resources experiences improved exploration success close to Long Canyon area

Cloud, Cane and LC South will be part of Anson's Paradox project with the claims being close to oil wells with historically recorded lithium values.

Picture of area surrounding Paradox Lithium Project
Management was particularly upbeat about the artesian flow of supersaturated brine at Cane Creek

Anson Resources Ltd’s (ASX:ASN) focus has been on the highly prospective Paradox Lithium Project in the US state of Utah.

The company had significant drilling success in the Cane Creek region of the project territory and in mid-April it staked three additional blocks of placer claims.

Management was particularly upbeat about the artesian flow of supersaturated brine at Cane Creek.

READ: Anson Resources' Cane Creek well demonstrates promising high-pressure and temperatures during sampling

Managing director Bruce Richardson said: “The artesian flow sustained from the Clastic Zone supports the model that the brines are under pressure in the project area and when intersected will flow to the surface.

The flow to surface of the supersaturated brine from a depth similar to that identified at Long Canyon is an indicator that the two areas may be linked.”

Drilling at Cane Creek has confirmed management’s expectation that lithium values increase towards the Long Canyon area where its wholly-owned subsidiary A1 Lithium has recently staked claims.

New claims could increase economic viability

Cloud, Cane and LC South will be part of its Paradox project with the claims being close to oil wells with historically recorded lithium values and the Roberts Rupture structure.

Richardson said: “The staking of this additional prospective ground is part of Anson’s strategic plan to fast-track the lithium project, particularly in the Long Canyon area which contains several recorded lithium values.

“It is expected to provide additional supersaturated brines for future processing and further improve the economic viability of the Paradox Brine Project.”

The Roberts Rupture structure, which is thought to provide natural fracturing of the host rock allowing the flow of fluids, is 140 metres to the east of the Cloud claims.

The new claims all have historical wells located on them which could be used for sampling programs or at a later date, production wells.

Lithium concentration related to Roberts Rupture

A maximum value of 142 parts per million (ppm) lithium from Clastic Zone 29, the free-flowing horizon, confirms the company’s belief that the lithium concentration is related to the Roberts Rupture structure and the cross-cutting structures which continue to increase in frequency to the south.

The next stage of the project development, bench top test work, can now commence with the bulk sample taken from the lithium-rich free-flowing horizon.

However, there were some important takeaways in terms of flow rates, temperatures and associated mineralisation.

Other minerals could improve economic viability

The concentrations of bromine, iodine, magnesium and additional salts are comparable to the brines sampled from the historic oil wells in the renowned Long Canyon region.

The presence of these by-products could be of significance in terms of providing a financial contribution to the Paradox Brine Project.

Both bromine and iodine are expected to be easily extracted in the proposed processing plant selected for the production of lithium.

Magnesium is precipitated at the start of the extraction process, and they all have commercial value enabling recovery and sale to an existing market.

The brine sampling program will continue for most of 2018 as it is part of the exploration program required to prove a JORC-compliant resource.

While requiring formal assessment, additional revenue generated by these possible by-products may have an impact on the project's financial feasibility.

Key upcoming milestones

The metallurgical test work and plant development program will involve a number of stages.

Assay samples from Cane Creek for lithium and other minerals will be examined at a laboratory in the US.

The second stage is the processing of a 500-litre bulk sample in a bench-top plant with a goal of producing lithium carbonate.

The results of the bench-top pilot plant will be used for the design of an in-field pilot plant, including the extraction of lithium and other minerals from the Paradox Basin brines.

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