Lithium Americas Corp.

Lithium Americas Corp.

June 14, 2010 08:15 ET

Lithium Americas Corp. Discovers Lithium Brine Outside of Previously Defined Inferred Resource Area at Cauchari Salar Project, Argentina


- Drilling Program - geochemical results obtained from 5 holes drilled outside of the previously defined lithium/potassium inferred resource area exceed or are in-line with past results

- 5 holes remaining to complete exploration program and update resources

- Positive Porosity Results - Continues to validate the favourable porosity of the aquifer outside the area of the inferred resource estimate

- Seismic Survey - Completed on principal property and demonstrates extension of the favourable permeable units

- Air Lift Tests - Preliminary results show encouraging brine yield of the aquifer - production holes for long term pump test to start in 60 days

- Property Expansion - Acquired an additional 6,477 hectares increasing dominant land position in the Puna Plateau

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 14, 2010) - Lithium Americas Corp. (TSX:LAC) ("Lithium Americas" or the "Company"), is pleased to report encouraging results from its on-going exploration program. The Company owns a total of 43,451 ha covering the vast majority of the Cauchari Salt Lake and approximately one third of the Olaroz Salt Lake. The Company has increased its property holdings in the area since its initial public offering and subsequent listing on the TSX on May 13, 2010, through the acquisition of two small borax producers and staking free land in the Olaroz Salt Lake.

"Since the completion of our NI 43-101 compliant Technical Report in February 2010, we have continued to advance the project on all fronts," stated Waldo Perez, President and CEO of Lithium Americas Corp. "Continued drilling, drainable porosity testing, seismic tomography and geochemical results have all come back extremely positive", said Perez. "These results continue to support our claim that we have a world-class lithium and potassium brine deposit in both size and quality, and are now even closer to beginning the development of our project."

Drilling Results Summary

The Company's 2009 drilling program included nine reverse circulation ("RC") drill holes and five diamond drill ("DDH") holes. Between January 2010 and June 2010, the Company drilled an additional eight RC holes and seven DDH drill holes. Drilling was concentrated in and around the area of Cauchari, where the lithium/potassium inferred resource estimate was completed, in order to increase the size and the confidence of the resource. It is expected that an additional five drill holes will be completed before updating the resource estimate.

The 2010 RC holes were drilled in locations that enabled the Company to obtain lithium /potassium brine results from an area that is approximately double the width (from 2 kilometres ("km") in width to 4 km in width) of the original area used in calculating the inferred resource estimate. Additionally, the new 2010 RC holes achieved depths that were on average 40 percent greater than the 2009 holes. Some of the new RC holes were drilled in the outer areas of the Cauchari salar (salt lake) with the intention of identifying the limits of the mineralization boundary. These drill locations demonstrated that the salar extends under the alluvial cones in some cases.

DDH results for the 2010 campaign identify that the porosity estimations of the sands in the 43- 101 compliant Technical Report may have been conservative. Diamond drilling is performed in order to collect intact samples of the salar, to reconstruct its geology, and to measure the porosity of the host rocks. There is a direct relationship between porosity and the size of a brine resource - the higher the porosity, the more brine (solution containing mineralization) the rock can host in its porous space.

Detailed Drilling Results:

Year-to-date, eight RC holes have been drilled at the Cauchari salar for a total of 1,700m. The RC holes allow brine sampling to take place metre by metre as the drilling progresses. Results from five of the eight RC holes are provided in the table below. Additional information on the location of the drill holes can be found in the updated corporate presentation in the investors section of the Company's web site at

Hole # Depth Length Li (mg/L) K (gr/L) Mg/Li
PE-09* 72-110 38 533 0.42 2.81
  115-197 82 691 0.55  
PE-10 95-152 57 437 0.50 1.91
  153-234 81 593 0.60  
PE-13 102-120 18 527 0.43 2.61
PE-15 62-187 125 531 0.46 2.27
PE-18 140-260 120 716 0.72 2.07

* PE-09 was started in 2009, drilled down to 167m and in 2010 extended down to 197m, therefore the upper results were included in the inferred resource estimate reported in the Company's 43-101 technical report.

Note: PE-12 and PE-16 were drilled as pre-collars to Diamond Drill holes, so no samples were collected in these holes. PE-14 was drilled down to 138m and did not find brine. PE-11 was aborted due to technical difficulties - further drilling (re-entering the hole) is planned for later in the year. PE-17 and PE-19 geochemical results are pending.

In addition, seven DDH holes have been drilled for a total of 2,300m in PQ and HQ3 diameter using triple tube system. The DDH holes allow for the geological reconstruction of the basin, the ability to identify the porous layers that host the lithium/potassium brine, and the measurement of drainable porosity - a fundamental parameter required to measure the resource. Recovery rates on average surpass 97 percent.

A total of 209 drainable porosity determinations were done at the Daniel B. Stephens Inc laboratories in New Mexico, United States. The average drainable porosities separated by geologic unit are:

Lithology N Mean (%) Media (%) Std Dev Max (%) Min (%)
Clay 26 4.9 3.3 4.5 14 0.58
Silty Loam 18 8.8 10 7 27.5 2.17
Loamy Sand 29 15 15 7 28 3
Sandy Loam 25 11 10 6 23 1.6
Sand 85 27 29 7 39 11
Salt 26 23 26 11 31 1.6

Some of these results are higher than the previous inferred resource estimate reported in the Company's NI 43-101 technical report.

Seismic Results in Cauchari

The Company completed a 50 km, high-resolution, 2D seismic tomography survey over its main property area located within the Cauchari Salar on 12 lines oriented to reconstruct the basin and identify the brine bearing aquifers.

The ability to apply seismic technology to the lithium/potassium salars, which was pioneered by the Company, has greatly assisted the Company in identifying the location of the lithium/potassium brine bearing regions and supported the identification of drilling sites for the Company's continued drilling program. Interpretation of the seismic data demonstrates the existence of sandy porous brine layers in an area that is at least 4 km in width and 56 km in length, and with a depth in excess of 400m.

Air Lift Test in Cauchari

The Company performed preliminary air lifts in RC holes in order to prove that the aquifer can be pumped. Results from drill hole PE-19 listed in the table below show the flow rate increases from 170m to 198m depth. Drill holes PE-18 and PE-17 yielded similar results. Other air lift tests performed in Diamond Drill holes DDH 11, DDH 12, DDH 4 and DDH 9 yielded between 50,000 and 150,000 litres of brine in 12 hours. These results are very positive since they demonstrate that brine can be extracted from the aquifer in significant volume, however they are preliminary in nature and will not replace production holes with pump tests that will start in the next 60 days, and are necessary to estimate the extractable mineral resource.

  Depth Pressure Flow Rate  
Drillhole       Observations
  (m) (psi) (l/seg)  
  54 200 1,09 fine sand, salt
  66 200 1,3 fine sand, salt
  72 200 3,3 fine sand, salt
  171 200 6 medium to fine sand with salt
PE-19 180 300 3,25 medium to fine sand with salt
  183 300 4,08 medium to fine sand with salt
  186 300 3,87 medium to fine sand with salt
  198 350 7,6 fine sand with clay and crystals salt
  204 350 4,47 fine sand with clay and crystals salt

About the Company

Lithium Americas Corp. (TSX:LAC) is a junior exploration company focused on the exploration of lithium, potassium, borax and other minerals in South America. The Company's principal and most advanced property comprises a significant portion of two adjacent Argentinean salt lakes, Cauchari and Olaroz, covering 43,451 hectares located in the Puna Plateau. The Puna Plateau is the most prolific brine reserve region globally, hosting approximately 84% of the world's lithium brine reserves. Based on an inferred resource estimate of 4.9 million tonnes of lithium carbonate, Lithium Americas' principal property is one of the largest known lithium brine deposits in the world. The Company believes the Cauchari and Olaroz property has the potential of becoming a world-class lithium deposit in both size and quality.

For more information please visit

John Kieley, P. Geo. is the internal Qualified Person on the project who has reviewed this news release and is responsible for the technical information reported herein.

Certain information contained in this news release is based on the Company's NI 43-101 compliant technical report titled "Amended Inferred Resource Estimation Of Lithium and Potassium at the Cauchari and Olaroz Salars, Jujuy Province, Argentina" dated February 15, 2010, prepared for Lithium Americas Corp. by Mark King, a "qualified person" pursuant to NI 43-101, which can be viewed on the Company's website or at, under the Company's profile. Inferred resources have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their economic feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of an inferred mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category. Under Canadian rules, estimates of inferred mineral resources may not form the basis of feasibility or prefeasibility studies, except in rare cases. Investors are cautioned not to assume that part or all of an inferred resource can be upgraded to an indicated or measured resource, or is economically mineable.

Sampling and Analytical Protocols: Sampling and analytical protocols were implemented and supervised by or under the direction of John Kieley, the Corporation's internal Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101. All of the geochemical samples were collected by geologists taking into account the nature of the material being sampled. The brines samples were collected from the cyclone in a plastic can and then transferred into in a brand new plastic bottle filled atop containing 1 litre of brine and tightly closed. All samples were tagged with a pre-numbered ticket and stored in a secured location at the base camp for no more than 10 days in cold dark storage. The samples were transported by Alex Stewart Assayers Argentina S.A. ("ASAA") laboratories from the site to their facilities in Mendoza (Argentina) where they were analyzed. ASAA is an ISO 9001-2000-certified laboratory with headquarters in England. The brine samples where analyzed by ICP analysis. All samples were assayed for 13 elements by ICP and AA. Accuracy and precision of results is tested through the systematic inclusion of blanks, standards and duplicates. Sulphate was assayed using the gravimetric method, chloride by the argentometric method and volumetric analysis (acid/base titration) was used for carbonates (alkalinity as CaCO3). Laboratory measurements were conducted for Total Dissolved Solids ("TDS"), density, and pH. Drainable porosity tests were carried out in intact diamond drill core every 3 meters on all undisturbed samples through the "Relative Water Release Capacity" method ("RWRC")" analysed by Daniel B. Stephens Inc. Laboratory in New Mexico, USA. The method calculates changes in volumetric moisture content as samples (initially fully saturated) drain over a three-day period under a vacuum suction. The drainable porosity is considered to be equal to the difference between volumetric moisture contents at the start and finish of the test .The samples were collected in a plastic tight container and shipped from Jujuy Province by DHL to USA

This press release contains forward-looking statements, which can be identified by the use of statements that include words such as "could", "potential", "believe", "expect", "anticipate", "intend", "plan", "likely", "will" or other similar words or phrases. The Company does not intend, and does not assume any obligations, to update forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless otherwise required by applicable securities laws. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Readers should review the Company's prospectus dated May 6, 2010 for a list of risks associated with the Company and its business.

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