Thor Mining (LSE:THR) bounced by 11.1pc on Monday morning after continuing its newsflow hot streak with a response to strong drilling results at its indirect lithium interest in the US. Thor owns a 1.075pc position in Australian company Hawkstone Mining (ASX:HWK), which is the 100pc owner of the Big Sandy lithium-clay project in Arizona.
Last Wednesday saw Hawkstone reveal that it had received the final results from its 37-hole phase two diamond drill project at the project. According to the firm, the work demonstrated a ‘significant thickening of the depth and strike of lithium mineralisation’ at the project. Highlight intercepts including 24m at 1,944 parts per million (ppm) lithium from 6m to 30m and 34, at 1,966ppm lithium from 31m to 65m. It added that drilling has also outlined extensions to the primary lithium mineralisation over a strike length of 850m.
Critically, Hawkstone said it expects to reveal a targeted maiden JORC resource for Big Sandy next month, adding that it is also in the process of appointing consultants to complete a pre-feasibility study on the project. This will involve producing lithium from drill core samples, developing a flow sheet, optimising acid consumption, and evaluating infrastructure and transport options. If Hawkstone reports a mineral resource estimate by September 2021 of at least 30MMts at a grade of more than 2,000pm lithium, then Thor will be allotted a further 7,812,500 shares in the business. This will more than double Thor’s stake.
Hawkstone’s managing director Paul Lloyd said: ‘Hawkstone’s Big Sandy project has delivered exceptional results as the company has successfully progressed through the 37-hole diamond drill program. High-grade intercepts have continued, and the assay results from the last three diamond drill holes further demonstrate the significant potential of the Big Sandy project, and importantly, mineralisation remains open to the north, south and west.’
Meanwhile, Thor’s executive chairman Mick Billing added: ‘We welcome the additional positive news from the Big Sandy drilling program. The program continues to improve the prospects for Big Sandy and the value of our Hawkstone investment, and we look forward to the maiden resource estimate, scheduled for late September 2019, and also the forecast pre-feasibility study.’
The positive update comes during a busy period for Thor. Last week, the organisation advanced after revealing an initial mineral resource estimate of 114,000ts copper at the northern portion of the Moonta exploration licence in South Australia. Thor is acquiring a 30pc interest in a new vehicle called EnviroCopper that is, in turn, earning a 75pc stake in the Moonta project from Andromeda Metals (ASX:ADN)
The resource, which is amenable to low-cost in-situ recovery (ISR) techniques, is thought to mark only the beginning of Moonta’s potential. Indeed, an additional 308 drill holes over deposits called Wombat, Bruce, and Larwood are due to be included in resource modelling once scheduled quality assurances are complete. The update takes EnviroCopper’s total managed resources inventory to 233,000ts of copper, with the business also earning-in to a 75pc stake in the historic Kapunda copper mine in South Australia. Subject to full earn in Thor would hold an effective 22.5pc interest in each of the Moonta and Kapunda copper projects.
In the video below from Visual News Services, Billing describes the significance of last week’s news in more detail.