TORONTO, ON--(Marketwired - March 20, 2017) -
NOT FOR DISSEMINATION IN THE US OR THROUGH US NEWSWIRE SERVICES
- Drill hole PP1-D-6 located in the southern portion of the Northern Target yielded an average of 683 mg/L lithium over 200 metres, consistent with the very high lithium grades already reported for the Northern Target.
- New drill results to the very south of the salar suggest the target area with high grade lithium brine extends far beyond the Northern Target over virtually the entire salar, encompassing an area of approximately 6,897 ha, and is deep - down to 200 metres in certain areas.
- Laboratory tests yielded drainable porosity results of up to 22% in the upper aquifer, confirming the extremely high porosity of that aquifer.
Neo Lithium Corp. ("Neo Lithium" or the "Company") (TSX VENTURE: NLC) is pleased to report drill geochemical, and porosity results from its ongoing drilling program at the Tres Quebradas lithium brine project ("3Q Project") in Catamarca Province, Argentina.
The main target of the 3Q Project until now has been known as the Northern Target, an area originally identified by surface sampling with an average lithium concentration of 895 mg/L and potassium concentration of 7,694 mg/L, and very low critical impurities, that extends over an area covering 4 km by 14 km (please refer to Neo Lithium's press release on July 20th, 2016 and the Company's current technical report).
On February 28, 2017, the Company issued a news release providing an update concerning drill results outside the Northern Target, over areas with low lithium content on surface but with significant lithium grades at depth (192 metres with 528 mg/L lithium and 4,797 mg/L potassium with a ratio of Mg/Li=2.6 and Sulfate/Li=0.63). Following these results, the Company extended the drill program south of the Northern Target, defining a new Southern Target with four more platforms and eight holes to be drilled at approximately 300 metres depth. The purpose of this news release is to provide results from another drill hole in the Northern Target and another in the Southern Target.
PP1-D-6: This diamond drill hole is in the southern portion of the Northern Target with a surface brine composition of approximately 600 mg/L lithium. Lithology is composed of porous sodium chloride interlayered with sand and conglomerates from 0 to 55 metres, a massive halite body from 55 to 150 metres and a porous halite/clastic sequence from 150 to 200 metres deep. Chemical results (based on five samples collected from surface down to 200 metres) yielded an average of 683 mg/L lithium and 5,960 mg/L potassium with a ratio of Mg/Li=1.93 and Sulfate/Li=0.49. These results suggest that the lithium content at depth is 10% to 20% higher than at surface in the Northern Target.
PP1-D-7: This diamond drill hole is located in the southern end of the Southern Target where surface samples yielded only 69 mg/L lithium. The drill core contains porous sodium chloride interlayered with sand and fine sands down 60 metres, followed by a massive and porous sodium chloride layer from 60 to 192 metres. Chemical results (based on five samples collected from surface down to 197.5 metres) yielded an average of 462 mg/L lithium and 4,304 mg/L potassium with a ratio of Mg/Li=6.6 and Sulfate/Li=0.68. In summary, lithium results at depth seem to be almost one order of magnitude higher than at surface in the Southern Target.
A map showing the location and results of the completed drill holes and the location of the Northern and Southern Targets is posted on the Neo Lithium website located at http://www.neolithium.ca/maps-sections/.
"Results continue to show the impressive nature of this unique salar -- virtually the entire salar complex contains high grade lithium, not just the Northern Target where we had initially concentrated our efforts due to surface results," said Constantine Karayannopoulos, Chairman of Neo Lithium. "The footprint of the high-grade lithium bearing area has dramatically increased from the original 1,820 ha of the Northern Target to approximately 6,897 ha of the combination of the Northern and the Southern Targets and is proving to be very deep. All of this is very good news and should have a significant positive impact on the resource estimation expected to be released in the second quarter of this year".
Representative diamond drill core samples were shipped to Daniel B. Stephens & Associates (DBS), Inc. laboratory in the U.S. to measure relative brine release capacity, a parameter equivalent to drainable porosity. Drainable porosity can be measured by pump tests but deeper aquifers are more difficult to evaluate with pump tests and direct measurements of porosity in representative samples is required to estimate resources in the salar. The higher the porosity means a larger resource.
Pump tests for the upper aquifer announced in the Company's February 20th, 2017 press release indicated effective porosity results of the upper aquifer (0-50 metres depth) between 16% and 34% for the platforms 2 and 3. These field results can be compared to measured results reported by DBS yielded drainable porosity percentages of the upper as well as the lower aquifers as follows:
Platform 4: Upper aquifer composed by granular halite and clastics from 1.5 to 47 metres deep: 8% - 12% drainable porosity.
Platform 6: Lower aquifer composed of compact and granular halite from 67 to 146 metres: 2.4% - 8% drainable porosity.
Platform 3: Lower aquifer composed of massive halite from 85 to 163 metres: 2.6% - 4.6% drainable porosity.
Platform 7: Upper aquifer composed of granular halite from 11 to 60 metres: 13% - 23% drainable porosity.
Lower aquifer composed of compact halite and fine clastic from 97 to 148 metres: 1.9% - 14% drainable porosity.
A map showing the location and results of the porosity tests of the upper and lower aquifers is posted on the Neo Lithium website located at http://www.neolithium.ca/maps-sections/.
"Measured porosity results in the salar show very clearly that the 3Q Project has a very porous upper aquifer with ranges of minimum porosity in a lab-size sample from 8% to 22%. These values confirm the pump test results," said Dr. Waldo Perez, President and CEO of Neo Lithium. "The deeper aquifer, on the other hand, shows porosity values as high as 14% below 100 metres of depth -- these values are extraordinary compared to other salars and show the significant potential of the 3Q Project at depth. The combination of higher lithium grades and high porosity values at depth has further strengthened our belief that we have discovered an exceptional lithium deposit."
Sample Collection (QA/QC)
The brine samples collected in the field were delivered by the Company to Andesmar Transport Company ("Andesmar") in Catamarca city, in the province of Catamarca. Andesmar has delivered the samples by truck to Alex Stewart Laboratories ("ASL"), an ISO 9001-2008-certified laboratory in Mendoza, Argentina. ASL used the following analytical methodologies: ICP-OES (inductively-coupled plasma-optical (atomic) emission spectrometry) to quantify boron, barium, calcium, lithium, magnesium, manganese, and potassium; an argentometric method to assay for chloride; a gravimetric method to analyze for sulfate; a volumetric analysis (acid/base titration) for the evaluation of alkalinity (as CaCO3); a gravimetric method to determine density and total dissolved solids; and, a laboratory pH meter to determine pH. All analytical work is subject to systematic and rigorous Quality Assurance-Quality Control. A reference ("standard") sample was inserted into the sample stream at a frequency of approximately 1 in 15 samples; a field blank was inserted at a frequency of approximately 1 in 15 samples; and a field duplicate sample was inserted at a frequency of approximately 1 in 15 samples.
The porosity samples were collected from undisturbed core in a Lexan tubing and delivered by company truck to Mendoza and by courier to the U.S. to Daniel B. Stephens & Associates, Inc. laboratory in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Relative Brine Capacity Tests were done using brine from the 3Q project.
About Neo Lithium Corp.
Neo Lithium Corp. is quickly becoming a prominent new name in lithium brine exploration by virtue of its quality 3Q Project and experienced team. Already well capitalized, Neo Lithium is rapidly advancing its newly discovered 3Q Project -- a unique high-grade lithium brine lake and salar complex in the Latin America's Lithium Triangle.
The 3Q Project is located in the Province of Catamarca, the largest lithium producer in Argentina. The project covers approximately 35,000 ha and the salar complex within this area is approximately 160 km2. Surface exploration results indicate a high-grade lithium target in the northern portion of the salar complex extending for approximately 20 by 5 km with low magnesium and sulphate impurities. Low impurities are a key factor in traditional low cost evaporation techniques for final lithium carbonate production. Hot springs on the property with elevated lithium content are part of the recharge system of the salar complex.
The technical team that discovered this unique salar complex is one of the most experienced in lithium salars, having discovered and led the technical work, including resource definition and full feasibility study that established the Cauchari lithium salar as the third largest lithium brine resource in the world.
Additional information regarding Neo Lithium Corp. is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com under the Company's profile and at its website at www.neolithium.ca, including various pictures of ongoing work at the project.
Waldo Perez, Ph.D, P.Geo., the CEO and President of Neo Lithium Corp. is the Qualified Person who approved the scientific and technical disclosure in the news release.
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. The TSX Venture Exchange Inc. has in no way approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release.
Forward Looking Statements - Certain information set forth in this news release may contain forward-looking statements. Such statements include but are not limited to, statements as to lithium brine grades at depth being consistent with surface results, the potential of the northern salar sediments for hosting brine, continued positive drilling results and the timing for planned resource estimation work, and that test results are indicative of future results . Generally, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects" or "is expected", "scheduled", "estimates" "intends", "anticipates", "believes", or variations of such words and phrases, or statements that certain actions, events or results "can", "may", "could", "would", "should", "might" or "will", occur or be achieved, or the negative connotations thereof. These forward-looking statements are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, certain of which are beyond the control of the Company, which could cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from the future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. These risks include, without limitation, risks related to failure to obtain adequate financing on a timely basis and on acceptable terms, political and regulatory risks associated with mining and exploration activities, including environmental regulation, risks and uncertainties relating to the interpretation of drill and sample results, risks related to the uncertainty of cost and time estimation and the potential for unexpected delays, costs and expenses, risks related to metal price fluctuations, the market for lithium products, and other risks and uncertainties related to the Company's prospects, properties and business detailed elsewhere in the Company's disclosure record. Although the Company believes its expectations are based upon reasonable assumptions and has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended and undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements.