ABx Group’s rare earths desorption tests among the standout results in Q1 2023

ABx Group (ASX:ABX) has solidified itself as a major minerals company following the reportedly highest extractions of rare earths via desorption from any clay-hosted project in Australia on the back of a productive Q1 2023. 

During the quarter, ABx Group opted to undertake 71 desorption tests on rare earth element (REE) samples gathered from Deep Leads/Rubble Mound deposit in northern Tasmania. Results included extractions from 24% to 83% for the resource area. Some 73% of the samples from the more closely drilled Deep Leads Project area average 50% extraction.

The company notes in its latest quarterly update that these results represent the highest extractions under these conditions reported from any clay-hosted project in Australia. 

ABx reports it also tripled its resources by 350% to 13.9Mt averaging 507ppm total rare earth oxide (TREO)-ceric oxide (CeO2) and 705ppm TREO at 250ppm TREO-CeO2 cut-off grade. The updated resource was delivered from less than 20% of the 35km-square REE extension area currently being drilled for the next resource update planned in May. 

Meanwhile, the company noted its majority owned chemicals company Alcore received the first $3.3 million instalment of a previously announced $7.5 million in grant funding under the Federal Government’s Modern Manufacturing Initiative (MMI) for construction of a pilot plant at the Alcore Technology Centre.

A hazard and operability (HAZOP) study has been conducted in conjunction with completion of basic engineering design. Additionally, a lab bath reactor MkII has been ordered and is expected to expedite process development at the plant. 

Advanced discussions are currently in progress with suppliers regarding the detailed engineering design. 

The company also notes it has submitted an Environmental Effects Report to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in order to achieve its goal of mining its DL130 Project in Tasmania by Q3 2023. 

ABx announces it has also made progress with designing of the mine and Bundaberg port at its Binjour Project in Queensland, with hopes of achieving mining operations by H1 2025. 

Planning for the next scheduled stage of environmental studies at both the mine and port locations is underway. 

As of the end of Q1 2023, the company had $4.48 million cash at hand. 

ABx Group is an ASX-listed minerals company currently developing 2 ‘high-tech’ businesses, the first being the discovery of REE within the company’s Tasmanian bauxite projects, and the second being a ‘high-priced’ aluminium fluoride for aluminium smelters and lithium-ion batteries.

Images: ABx Group Ltd
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Written By Adam Drought
Born and raised in the UK, Adam is a sports fanatic with an interest in Rugby League and UFC/MMA. When not training in Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Adam attends Griffith University where he is completing his final year of a Communication & Journalism degree.