Zenith Minerals Limited (ASX:ZNC) (Zenith or the Company) is pleased to announce the maiden inferred mineral resource for the Rio Lithium Deposit at Split Rocks, as estimated by independent resource consultants CSA Global. The mineral resource for the Split Rocks Rio lithium pegmatite deposit has been determined using all data available as of 3rd August 2023.
The Rio Lithium Deposit at Split Rocks has an inferred mineral resource of 11.9Mt @ 0.72% Li2O, 415ppm Cs, 75ppm Nb, 217ppm Sn, and 59ppm Ta (at a 0.5% Li2O cut-off grade).
The current resource estimation has seen significant smoothing of lithium grades due to the wide drill spacing (generally 200m x 100m). However, closer spaced drilling holds the potential to define more discrete high-grade lithium zones, which could enhance the overall lithium grade of the deposit.
Lithium mineralisation remains open in multiple directions: northeast, south, and at depth. Further drilling is essential to define the full limits of mineralisation.
Rio is the first of over 30 lithium targets within the Split Rocks project that the Company has tested with extensive RC and diamond drilling.
To determine the reasonable prospects for eventual economic extraction, a preliminary open pit optimisation was conducted. The resultant pit captured the majority of the lithium mineralisation. The remaining mineralisation is in shallow dipping sheets, which would be amenable to low-cost room and pillar underground mining.
Executive Chairman, David Ledger said: "I am delighted to announce this maiden Inferred Mineral Resource for the Rio Deposit, the initial lithium discovery within our very large Split Rocks project area. To establish the quantum of lithium present from the initial wide-spaced exploration drilling, Zenith independently engaged resource consultants CSA to estimate a resource for the first lithium deposit discovered at Split Rocks. We very much look forward to advancing Split Rocks, testing the numerous high-quality targets therein and advancing our other three high-quality lithium projects in Western Australia”.
EVM Agreement Update:
In January 2022, Zenith granted EV Metals Group (EVM) the exclusive right to earn a 60% project interest in the Split Rocks and Waratah Well projects. This would be achieved by EVM solely funding the completion of a feasibility study before January 2024. The feasibility study must meet specific criteria, including having a Mineral Resource of a minimum of 35Mt @ 1.2% Li2O. If EVM fails to complete the study by 6 January 2024, the agreement will terminate.
Zenith is currently of the belief that EVM will not be able to complete the feasibility study within the stipulated earn-in period. As a result, Zenith is preparing to reassume full control of a 100% interest in the Split Rocks and Waratah Well lithium projects by early January 2024. Upon regaining full control, Zenith will update the market on its future plans to advance these assets towards development and deliver enhanced value for its shareholders.
Zenith Minerals Limited (ASX:ZNC) is an Australian-based minerals exploration company leveraged to the increasing global demand for metals critical to the production processes of new energy industrial sectors.