In August 2023, a third-party Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) of Separation Rapids was completed by SLR Consulting (Canada) Ltd. The MRE revealed a deposit of battery-grade lithium ore (Li2O) that was 20% larger than the previous estimates. Key highlights:
Mineral Resource Estimate – Separation Rapids, August 7, 2023
CIM (2014) definitions were followed for Mineral Resources.
Mineral Resources are reported using a petalite concentrate price assumption of US $1,300/t with an exchange rate of US$1 = C$1.30.
Open pit Mineral Resources are reported at a 0.29 % Li2O cut-off grade (COG) in a Whittle resource shell. The Whittle resource shell and open pit COG grade are based on a mining cost of C$5.50/t, general and administration cost of C$3.50/t, a processing cost of C$55.00/t, and a recovery of 50%.
Underground Mineral Resources are reported within Deswik resource panels which were generated using a breakeven 0.9 % Li2O COG. The underground breakeven COG grade is based on a mining cost of C$120/t, general and administration cost of C$3.50/t a processing cost of C$55.00/t, a recovery of 50%, and an exchange rate of US$1 = C$1.30. The Deswik resource panels are 5 m by 5 m by 3 m wide.
Mineral resources are reported based on a minimum thickness of approximately 3 m.
Average bulk densities were assigned to the blocks and range between 2.61 t/m3 and 2.66 t/m3 for the lithium pegmatite.
Numbers may not add due to rounding.
Mineral Resources that are not Mineral Reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability.
Open Pit with a Measured and Indicated category of 9.39Mt averaging 1.34% Li2O with the start of an underground resource of 0.68 Mt averaging 1.43% Li2O
10.08Mt averaging 1.35% Li2O in Measured and Indicated, a 20% increase in size as compared to 2018 results
2.81Mt averaging 1.38% Li2O in the Inferred category, a 57% increase in size as compared to 2018 results
136,000 tonnes of Li2O in Measured and Indicated, a 15% increase in size as compared to 2018 results
39,000 tonnes Li2O in the Inferred category, a 60% increase in size as compared to 2018 results
“This updated estimate reveals the quality and quantity of the resource at Separation Rapids, and underscores the rationale for the strategic partnership between Avalon and Sibelco. It confirms that the deposit can deliver sufficient volumes of commercial-grade feedstock suitable for both the glass-ceramics and lithium battery markets. This data gives Avalon and Sibelco the confidence to pursue the next phase of development at Separation Rapids, finalizing a definitive feasibility study and moving towards production.”
Scott Monteith, Avalon CEO
Located 70 kilometres north of Kenora, Ontario in the province’s expansive northwest, the Separation Rapids project is a rich deposit of petalite ore uniquely suited to serve both the international market for glass-ceramics and the North American market for EV batteries.
Through a strategic partnership with SCR-Sibelco NV, Avalon has formed the Separation Rapids, Ltd. Subsidiary, which is quickly moving to operationalize mineral extraction activity. The target date for commencement of lithium concentrate production is the first quarter of 2026.
The subsidiary’s medium- to long-term objective is to consolidate and bring into production the larger strike zone, inclusive of the Snowbank project. Avalon estimates the full strike line contains enough resource to serve the glass-ceramics and EV battery markets for the next two to three decades.