Perth-based explorer Future Battery Minerals (ASX:FBM) is planning to expand its ongoing phase three drilling program at the Kangaroo Hills Lithium Project in Western Australia.
The $47.06 million market capitalisation company reports the program will now include additional diamond drilling on top of the 5,000m of planned reverse circulation (RC) drilling to test the Big Red, Rocky, Eastern Grey, Wallaroo, and Pademelon targets.
Core samples collected from the drilling will provide Future Battery Minerals with the ability to undertake detailed geological assessments, which include structural measurements to understand the geometry of the pegmatite.
The Kangaroo Hills project is jointly owned by Future Battery Minerals and fellow ASX-listed Lodestar Minerals (ASX:LSR), with each company holding 80% and 20%, respectively.
Interestingly, as of 6.15pm AEST Lodestar’s share price had rise 40% while Future Battery Minerals’ was unchanged.
Future Battery Minerals reports it is awaiting approval for drilling to the north of Big Red, Western Grey, and Quokka prospects, which encroach on the Kangaroo Hills Timber Reserve.
This drilling requires the assessment of the Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) for approval of a new Programme of Works (PoW) in addition to the assessments made by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS).
The company says it has applied for both RC and diamond drilling to the north of Big Red, which will include drill spacing suitable for resource definition. Future Battery Minerals has also been consulted by DBCA regarding the planned works within the timber reserves and is submitting further details and risk assessments to assist with DBCA’s assessment, which is expected to take about 3 months to approve.
Throughout this period, Future Battery Minerals reports it will continue to refine targets through non-ground disturbing activities, which it says will ensure the program can test the ‘highest-priority’ targets as soon as drilling is approved.
News of the expanded drilling program follows the receipt of further ‘high-grade’ results recorded in 5 diamond holes drilled at Big Red as part of a phase two program at Kangaroo Hills.
Future Battery Minerals reports the 5 holes were completed in May to follow up on the shallow, thick, ‘high-grade’ lithium pegmatites recorded in earlier RC drilling at Kangaroo Hills in March 2023.
Newly reported assay results include hole KHDD001 with 23m @ 1.19% Li2O from 44m; KHDD002 with 10m @ 1.3% Li2O from 25m; and KHDD004 with 5.9m @ 1.15% Li2O from surface.
The company says the diamond drilling component of the phase two program was conducted to gather further geological information on Big Red, which will be used in early-stage metallurgical and mineralogy investigation work.
Commenting on the results, Future Battery Minerals Technical Director Robin Cox says: “Wrapping up the phase two drilling program, the assay results of the DD component support the significant discovery at the Big Red prospect within the Kangaroo Hills Lithium Project.
The diamond drilling has been invaluable at this early stage of the project, providing the team with the ability to conduct detailed geological and mineralogical logging of the spodumene pegmatites and provide sample for metallurgical testwork.
“The diamond drilling has been invaluable at this early stage of the project”
As the company proceeds with drilling the phase three RC program, preparations are underway to mobilise a diamond core rig to the site in the next fortnight. This rig will complement the current drilling program at the KHLP.”
Future Battery Minerals is a Perth-based explorer focused on its portfolio of assets in Australia and the US, which are considered prospective for lithium, nickel, and copper.
These assets include an 80% interest in the Kangaroo Hills Lithium Project, along with the Leinster and Saints Nickel projects in Western Australia. The company also holds the Bonaventura, Arden, and Torrens East Copper Projects in South Australia and the Nevada Lithium Project in the US.
On 15 June, Future Battery Minerals received $2.8 million from the sale of its Nepean Nickel Project, and it will receive a further $7.2 million as part of a deferred consideration for this transaction.
Write to Harry Mulholland at Mining.com.au
Images: Future Battery Minerals Ltd