Critical Resources (ASX:CRR) sorts Ontario lithium ore into high-grade Canadian concentrate

Critical Resources (ASX:CRR) sorts Ontario lithium ore into high-grade Canadian concentrate

May 2, 2024 Off By Jack Baker

Critical Resources’ first ore sorting amenability trials have achieved a 150 per cent increase in contained lithia and production of a 1.65% Li20 concentrate from its fully owned Mavis Lake project in northwest Ontario.

X-ray transmission sorting trials achieved 98% waste rock rejection and 99% spodumene recovery to product, while ultra-violet laser direct sorting achieved the high-grade spodumene ore concentrate with even more rejected waste.

Work was done on a 150-kilogram sample from a wide range of Mavis Lake rocks to reflect worst case dilution from full scale mining.

The next phase will use a bulk scale sample suite more than ten times heavier and better representative of the project’s current 8Mt @ 1.07% Li2O resource and predominant coarse-grain and low-impurity pegmatite.

Critical Resources Managing Director Alex Cheeseman said the results were outstanding, and incorporating ore sorting into the Mavis Lake flowsheet has the potential to improve both consistency and quality of spodumene concentrate.

“While also offering potential operational benefits including widening the feed envelope to include multiple sources of raw material, as well as possible reductions in the project footprint,” Cheeseman said.

“Given the excellent performance of Mavis Lake ore, we now have a fantastic opportunity to design a process flow sheet that fully utilises the operational advantages offered by these technologies.”

A full three-phased metallurgical program is underway with delivery of the bulk core samples to Saskatoon to the Saskatchewan Research Council, who expects the first phase expected to take about 20 weeks.

The tests will be inclusive of bulk ore sorting after the successful amenability trials, laying the opportunity of UV-laser based sorting to produce coarse concentrates and reduce the costs and total impact of hard rock processing operations.

The Perth-headquartered explorer is confident it can continue building its resource while testwork is underway, and has resource modelling underway for an upgrade.

There are more hefty-sized spodumene bearing outcrops remaining untouched by the drill at Mavis Lake, and a few are likely to get crossed off the list with the summer field season fast approaching in the Great White North.

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