Alligator Energy (ASX:AGE) could be in production ‘later in the decade’ with its Samphire Uranium Project in South Australia.
Speaking to Mining.com.au, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Greg Hall says in the meantime, the company is booked up all year round in 2024. Once drilling is completed, Alligator will undertake an updated uranium resource around October or November next year.
“So we’re expecting to drill all year on parts of this Exploration Target Range, and then we’ll do an updated resource with a plan to target an increased resource in late 2024.
As we expand that resource, that means we can either put the production rate up in a future mine or run the mine longer.”
“As we expand that resource, that means we can either put the production rate up in a future mine or run the mine longer”
This news comes after the $212.42 million market capitalisation company on 7 December announced it had increased its confidence levels in the existing mineral resource, with the ‘indicated’ category accounting for 74% of the total resource.
Further, Alligator also defined a ‘significant’ Exploration Target Range within Samphire of 14 to 75 million pounds (Mlbs) of uranium.
The Exploration Target Range was uncovered via an extensive data review, which outlined that the area includes extensions to mineralisation at its Blackbush and Plumbush deposits, along with other areas of known mineralisation and potential extensions.
Hall tells this news service the company has hit mineralisation that is spread further afield, but Alligator has been unable to follow up on and drill test these areas.
“We knew we had good potential for additional mineralisation because we’ve already got holes drilled into uranium mineralisation.”
The extensive data review also uncovered 11 discrete palaeochannel areas, 5 of which were used in the range estimate. Alligator notes only Kanaka Bed sands hosted areas amenable to In-Situ Recovery (ISR) were considered.
Alligator is currently going through ISR processes and anticipates getting approvals to run a pilot trial during early-mid next year, which will then allow its to go into a Feasibility Study for the project.
Hall adds that the company will then do a full mine approval on the basis of the Feasibility Study outcome.
“If that gets approved and we’ve got an economic project, you raise finance and you start construction. But it’ll be later in the decade that we’ll be starting to produce.”
“it’ll be later in the decade that we’ll be starting to produce”
Alligator will drill test areas interpreted to be ‘highly prospective’ to host uranium mineralisation, based on the presence of underlying uranium source rocks, and overlying or adjacent palaeochannel sediments — similar to those encountered at Blackbush and historical drillholes that intersected mineralisation.
Upon completing drill testing, the company will conduct ground gravity to delineate further palaeochannels in areas where channels have not yet been delineated but are believed to exist.
S&P Global reports uranium spot prices steadily increased since the start of 2022, rising 15.2% over last year before increasing by a further 16.6% by the end of October 2023.
The current price of uranium is sitting at US$81.450 per pound, according to Trading Economics.
Alligator Energy is an Australian developer and explorer focused on uranium and energy-related minerals.
As of 30 September 2023, the company had $37.9 million cash at hand, according to its latest quarterly report.
Write to Aaliyah Rogan at Mining.com.au
Images: Alligator Energy