Impact Minerals (ASX:IPT) is preparing to commence drilling at the Hyperion and Swordfish prospects within its Arkun Project in Western Australia after finding ‘significant high-tenor’ rare earth soil anomalism in the area.
The $32.94 million market capitalisation company says it plans to kick off the drilling work ‘as soon as practicable’ to follow up on recent soil geochemistry surveys.
At the Hyperion prospect, the soil work highlighted rare earth element (REE) anomalism of up to 5,880 parts per million (ppm) total rare earth oxides plus yttrium (TREO+Y) and neodymium and praseodymium results of up to 21%.
The soil anomaly covers at least 3km-square at greater than 1,000 ppm TREO, according to Impact, and it remains open along-strike to the northwest and southeast.
Meanwhile, at Swordfish, soil results showed REE enriched in the soils with a peak grade of 1,883 ppm TREO. The soil anomalism at this prospect remains ‘broadly open’ in most directions, particularly to the south and east.
Impact says this prospect attests to the ‘significant prospectivity’ for REE mineralisation across the Arkun project.
The company says the nature, depth, and thickness of the REE mineralisation at the Hyperion and Swordfish deposits are still unknown, hence the need for drilling to help the company define the extent of REE anomalism and the nature of the host rocks.
While the drilling still requires statutory approvals and landholder consent, Impact expects to be able to begin the work in the second or third quarter of 2024.
Managing Director Mike Jones says the discovery of Hyperion is a ‘significant breakthrough’ for the Arkun project, which until now has primarily been explored for nickel, platinum, and copper.
“Impact’s exploration strategy recognises that the Corrigin Tectonic Zone has potential for various commodities, including REEs, and the Hyperion prospect could host a large REE deposit in the clays developed in weathered granite.
However, the key to an economic discovery is to evaluate how easily the REEs can be extracted through simple acid leaching. For this purpose, initial drill testing and bulk sampling for metallurgical test work will be conducted in the upcoming field season. The extraction characteristics will help guide resource definition drilling later in the year.”
“Impact’s exploration strategy recognises that the Corrigin Tectonic Zone has potential for various commodities…”
Impact’s new Hyperion and Swordfish discoveries build on the previously reported 10km-long Horseshoe REE anomaly in the Arkun area and emphasise the rare earths potential of the wider Horseshoe project.
The company had roughly $3.1 million cash and cash equivalents at hand as of 30 September 2023, according to its latest quarterly report.
Write to Joshua Smith at Mining.com.au
Images: Impact Minerals