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Andromeda Metals confirms high-purity halloysite at Poochera project

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Analysis of drill samples has returned an average grade of 59% halloysite with a high value of more than 90%.

Andromeda Metals Ltd - Andromeda Metals confirms high-purity halloysite at Poochera project

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Andromeda Metals Ltd (ASX:ADN) has confirmed the presence of high-purity halloysite after analysing samples from the Poochera Halloysite-Kaolin Project in South Australia.

Laboratory analysis undertaken at a minus-2 micron fraction size performed on a selection of samples returned an average of 59% halloysite.

The analysis was carried out on samples from a selection of nine holes drilled at three different target areas across the Poochera project in April-May 2019.

High value of 91%

A high value of 91% was reported at Condooringie prospect, 4 kilometres north of Carey’s Well deposit, which confirmed historical high halloysite intercepts found by Minotaur Exploration Ltd (ASX:MEP).

Andromeda’s managing director James Marsh said, “The confirmation of high-purity halloysite in a highly prospective area for kaolin is an extremely exciting development.

“This significantly adds to the already prospective halloysite-kaolin project at Carey’s Well, which is currently the subject of a feasibility study.”

Shares up 8%

Shares have been up as much as 8% to an intra-day high of 5.2 cents.

Analysis of halloysite content was done by taking samples of the bright white kaolinised granite and screening them at 45 microns to remove the sand before cutting the particle size distribution at a 2-micron top size, before being measured by CSIRO. 

Test results gave halloysite up to a maximum value of 91% for Condooringie drill hole CD19AC05 and which contained an approximate 20-metre intercept of high-bright kaolinised granite.

High-purity halloysite results were also recorded for a number of holes at Carey’s Well deposit, and the Tomney East and Tomney West prospects.

Complex process

Halloysite content measurements are a complex time-consuming process due to the chemical and mineralogical similarities between halloysite and kaolinite, resulting in a long lead time for final results.

Andromeda uses the CSIRO, one of the world’s leading experts in halloysite and kaolinite measurement, to complete this analysis.

The collaboration between the CSIRO and Andromeda for halloysite measurement analysis has resulted in significant in-house knowledge and valuable experience being gained.

A drilling program at Condooringie prospect is in progress with up to 88 aircore holes planned targeting this halloysite rich area.

An update to the mineral resource at Carey’s Well is nearing completion and will be reported shortly.

The company is also advancing an expanded scoping study and feasibility studies with the results expected through the first half of 2020.

Andromeda is working towards a Mining Lease application as part of feasibility evaluations.

In addition to Carey’s Well, additional high-quality halloysite-kaolin prospects occur extensively across the Poochera project area.

Tubular derivative

Halloysite is a rare ‘tubular-shaped’ derivative of kaolin that has a wide variety of industrial uses.

The main application has historically been as an additive for high-quality ceramics, however, there has been an exponential increase in global research aimed at new applications for halloysite nanotubes (HNT).

Pure halloysite with tubular structure (Al2O3.2SiO2.2H2O).

This is because the nanotubular forms of halloysite have potential uses in a large range of nanotechnologies including polymers, medicine, agriculture, construction, carbon capture, hydrogen storage, water purification and batteries.

The Global Innovative Centre for Advanced Nanomaterials (GICAN) at the University of Newcastle in NSW is producing some exciting research results using Carey’s Well halloysite in battery technology development, water purification, carbon capture and hydrogen storage.

Each of these applications has the potential to present unlimited global development opportunities.

JV with Minotaur

Under the terms of the Poochera Halloysite-Kaolin Project JV with Minotaur, Andromeda can acquire up to 75% of the project by sole funding $6 million over five years or alternatively by the JV partners making a decision to mine.

Andromeda may earn an initial 51% of the project through the expenditure on advancing the project of $3 million within the first two years.

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