- Initial drilling results from Lithium Chile’s Ollague site show positive results near surface and increasing with depth
- Company is now preparing to drill in its top priority location – Coipasa
- Lithium Chile holds one of the largest lithium land holdings in one of the largest lithium-producing zones on the planet
As summer weather approaches in the southern Andes region of South America, anticipation is rising along with the temperatures on the lithium-rich brine fields where mineral explorer Lithium Chile Inc. (TSX.V: LITH) (OTCQB: LTMCF) is drilling for commercially productive sources of the tech-friendly soft metal. The company has gained promising results from initial drilling at one site that it considers a priority and is awaiting professional assay reports on the lithium extracts, and it is now preparing to drill at an even more promising location.
Lithium has been in demand for years as a source of easily reacting, lightweight properties that sustain high-power batteries and allow them to be easily rechargeable. Those high-energy batteries have become ubiquitous in small, portable computerized devices and have recently become valuable for larger applications, such as powering electric vehicles and storing energy to enhance municipal electrical grids.
Over the past year, Lithium Chile has amassed one of the largest lithium land holdings in one of the largest lithium-producing regions on Earth — the so-called “Lithium Triangle” spanning the border regions between Chile, Argentina and Bolivia. Lithium Chile’s 100 percent-owned 159,700 hectares (394,627.3 acres) of land with high lithium potential were acquired at just over $3 per hectare in a country where sales have commanded over $800 per hectare in other lithium prospects, and the company is now advancing a drill exploration program to test its analysis of its top priority locations among 16 separate sites.
After sample programs on all of the sites, Lithium Chile prioritized the potential metal-rich brine returns of six salars — dry lake beds where lithium is expected to exist in large quantities — and conducted geophysical testing on the top five to determine their boundaries and potential through gravity and electromagnetic conductivity (TEM) programs.
“We were extremely pleased that the TEM showed highly conductive targets on all of our 5 properties,” Lithium Chile President and CEO Steven Cochrane told shareholders (http://nnw.fm/fPQ4d) after an October 11 news release provided an update on the company’s encouraging exploration results (http://nnw.fm/1yzNV).
Lithium Chile received permission to complete exploratory drilling programs on four of the five priority sites from the national Ministry of Mines, subject to local community permission for ground-level drilling access. During talks with the four communities — which, in level of priority for Lithium Chile, are Coipasa, Helados, Atacama and Ollague — Ollague was the first to grant the necessary permission, and Lithium Chile completed four drills between 250 and 300 meters (820 to 984 feet) deep, adding a fifth to 350 meters (1,148 feet) after findings from the first hole showed increasing grades of lithium as the drill reached lower depths.
The first hole returned results that the company described as lithium concentrations on par with the average grades in Argentina (http://nnw.fm/zDXC8). Holes three and four produced similar results.
“Like hole 1 the grades steadily improved from below 100 mg/l to over 270 mg/l before drilling finished at the contracted depth of 250 meters,” Cochrane told shareholders. “We are hoping that just as the top of hole 3 and 4 mirrored the results from the upper section of hole 1 that the deeper samples from hole 5 will show that lithium grade increases with depth.”
Lithium Chile has obtained permission from Ollague to drill its exploratory hole 4 deeper, to 500 meters (1,640.5 feet), if the results from hole 5 show continued improvement in the lithium grade as its depth increases. In the meantime, the company has begun moving its drilling facilities to its top priority – Coipasa – after establishing permission to explore there.
“We (are) finalizing terms of the program with the Ancovinto Indigenous Community executive and we hope to collar our first hole shortly,” Cochrane stated in a news release.
For more information, visit the company’s website at http://nnw.fm/LTMCF
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