- Arizona Lithium (AZL) progresses scoping and prefeasibility studies for its Big Sandy project in Arizona following “very encouraging” metallurgical testwork results
- Testwork has shown 71 per cent recovery of lithium in 36 per cent of the whole ore mass, and a reduction in acid consumption to 176 kilograms per megaton of the whole ore
- Acid consumption was initially the major cost driver and AZL says these results shift the economics of the project and opens up numerous scenarios for mining and processing
- Approval is pending for a permit of exploration across 145 exploration holes and a bulk sample at Big Sandy
- Shares have been trading 9 per cent higher at 12 cents
Arizona Lithium (AZL) says it is encouraged by the latest results from metallurgical testwork at its Big Sandy project in Arizona.
The company completed a drill program at the project in 2019, which resulted in the estimation of a total Indicated and Inferred JORC resource of 32.5 million tonnes grading 1850 parts per million (ppm) lithium for 320,800 tonnes lithium carbonate.
Now, a metallurgical testing program at Hazen Research has shown the ability to recover 71 per cent of the lithium in 36 per cent of the whole ore mass.
Additionally, acid consuming carbonates were reduced by 92 per cent. Sulfuric acid consumption was 490 kilograms per megaton on the concentrate which is equivalent to 176 kilograms per megatons of the whole ore.
According to the company, sulfuric acid consumption was initially the major cost driver and these results shift the economics of the project, opening up numerous scenarios for mining and processing.
With the processing flow sheet determined, Arizona Lithium said it has the base work to move forward with scoping and pre-feasibility studies for the project in the coming months.
In conjunction, ongoing test work is said to be ramping up to produce larger quantities of concentrate to increase the scale of the leaching tests to enable leach circuit optimisation.
The company is awaiting approval from the Bureau of Land Management for a permit of exploration across 145 exploration holes and a bulk sample at Big Sandy. Arizona Lithium is encouraging community involvement to attain “mutually beneficial” outcomes for all stakeholders.
Moreover, the company is reportedly “very confident” its drilling program can be completed without any environmental impact and to the satisfaction of its stakeholders.
Shares were trading 9 per cent higher at 12 cents at 10:48am AEDT.