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Lithium Australia secures option over further lithium prospective acreage in WA

The Youanmi Lithium Project hosts extensive lithium mineralisation and outcropping pegmatites.
Rock sample from Youanmi project
A mineralised sample from Youanmi with abundant lepidolite

Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is adding to its extensive lithium holdings in Western Australia after taking an option over the Youanmi Lithium Project, which hosts abundant pegmatites.

These lithium pegmatites intrude layered mafic rocks, which also host vanadium-rich magnetite horizons.

Three exploration licences in the prospective Youanmi region have been secured by completing a binding heads of agreement with private exploration company, Diversity Resources Pty Ltd.

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said, “The Youanmi Lithium Project has many of the attributes of WA’s other emerging lithium centres.”

The project is within the Archean Yilgarn Block, about 450 kilometres northeast of Perth.

Lithium potential “largely ignored”

Griffin said the area had been a focus of past multi-metal exploration but the lithium potential had largely been ignored.

However, “there has been a significant amount of drilling of the vanadium horizons”.

The three exploration licences in the Youanmi region of WA’s Mid-West.

Youanmi is at an early exploration stage and initial work has included prospecting, review of past work, geological inspections, geological mapping, rock chip sampling and minor orientation geochemistry.

Other work carried out includes digital terrain modelling, acquisition and interpretation of publicly available aeromagnetic and radiometric images, GPS topographic surveying, CAD drafting and database creation.

READ: Lithium Australia cathode powder plant to produce samples for China battery makers

This work has revealed occurrences of lithium-bearing pegmatites over a strike length of almost 3-kilometres and a width of at least 200 metres.

Rock sampling has confirmed the presence of potentially economic lithium values of up to 4.2% Li2O and also anomalous tantalum values.

Spodumene may also occur

The lithium mineral in the pegmatites inspected so far is lepidolite while regional zoning patterns in pegmatites elsewhere suggest the possibility that spodumene could also occur in the area.

Most of the area around the known pegmatite locations is covered by sheetwash and it is likely that lithium pegmatites are far more extensive than the few outcrops currently known.

An unexplained magnetic low beneath the main area of pegmatite dykes suggests the possibility of a larger pegmatite mass beneath.

READ: Lithium Australia begins trade-off studies for large-scale lithium processing pilot plant

Griffin said that the lithium mineralisation style was ideally suited to the company’s SiLeach® processing and “may be a feed source for Lithium Australia’s Generation 3 pilot plant”.

Agreement terms

The agreement involves the company securing an option to purchase 100% of the project for consideration of:

- An option to acquire all of Diversity Resources Pty Ltd rights, interests and title in and to Exploration Licences 57/978 and 57/1049 and 57/1056 for $100,000 for an initial 6-month option, non-refundable;
- $100,000 for an extension to the option period to 12 months, non-refundable;
- $3.1 million scrip exercise; and
- Surviving gross production royalty of 2%, or $1 per ton of material mined and processed, whichever is greater.

The parties will work towards completion of a formal agreement within 30 days.

Lithium Australia aspires to 'close the loop' on the energy-metal cycle.

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