NickelSearch (ASX:NIS) is planning its first lithium-focussed drill program at its Carlingup Project in Western Australia after finding a string of ‘priority’ lithium targets through soil sampling at the Quarry area.
The battery metals explorer says the soil sampling results confirm ‘significant’ lithium-caesium-tantalum (LCT) anomalies to the west and south of the Quarry, measuring between 250m by 500m and 200m by 100m.
What’s more, NickelSearch says the mineralisation values in these areas peak at 3 times the average background for lithium, 4.5 times for caesium, and 4.7 times for tantalum.
With 5 targets now identified, NickelSearch has begun planning a drill program for the region and is negotiating with relevant parties for access and compensation to allow for the drilling to be carried out on the private land.
NickelSearch Managing Director Nicole Duncan says the company’s work so far has demonstrated ‘compelling evidence’ of the presence of an LCT pegmatite system in the Carlingup area, with anomalism observed within and to the north, west, and south of the Quarry.
“Based on these results, it is plausible to suggest that the LCT indicators observed over this area represent one large system.
Rock chip samples taken during the mapping confirm that many of the pegmatite intrusions contain elements associated with LCT pegmatites.”
Duncan adds that the pegmatites in the region generally have ‘relatively weak’ surface expressions but better grades in the fresh parts of the system below.
The soil sampling results presented a peak lithium value of 78.3 parts per million (ppm) compared to an average background of 26ppm, a peak caesium value of 15ppm over an average background of 3.3ppm, and a peak tantalum value of 23 parts per billion (ppb) over an average background of 4.9ppb.
NickelSearch also found higher-than-background-average values of tin, niobium, rubidium, and gallium in these anomalous areas.
As NickelSearch plans its drilling work, the company is awaiting assays from further soil samples to the north of the Quarry and from rock chips and soil samples taken during a regional exploration program.
The company is continuing its regional exploration work across its 28 areas of interest identified so far within its Carlingup tenements.
Write to Joshua Smith at Mining.com.au