North American Nickel Inc.
TSX VENTURE : NAN
OTCBB : WSCRF

North American Nickel Inc.

April 11, 2016 16:37 ET

North American Nickel Report Results From QEMSCAN Mineralogical Analyses Indicating Potential for High Nickel Recoveries

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - April 11, 2016) - North American Nickel Inc. (TSX VENTURE:NAN)(OTCBB:WSCRF) (CUSIP:65704T 108) (the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has received a report on the results of mineralogical studies performed by SGS Canada Inc. ("SGS") on five drill core samples of nickel-copper sulphides from the 2015 exploration program at the Maniitsoq Ni-Cu-Co-PGE sulphide project in southwest Greenland. The samples were obtained from mineralized norite intrusions at exploration targets P-013, P-032 and P-053.

The objectives of the study were to determine the modal mineralogy, mineral texture, nickel, copper and cobalt deportment, and the liberation, association and exposure of the nickel, copper and iron sulphides of each sample. A copy of the report can be found on the Company website www.northamericannickel.com.

Report Highlights:

  • Sulphide mineral species identified in each sample are pyrrhotite, pentlandite, pyrite and chalcopyrite.
  • 91.9 to 95.2% of the total nickel in each sample is contained within pentlandite.
  • 4.4 to 7.7% of the total nickel in each sample is contained within pyrrhotite.
  • Potential pentlandite recoveries range from 96.7 to 98% based on liberation, association and exposure characteristics of crushed samples stage pulverized to 90% passing 150 micrometres.
  • Pentlandite D50 (micrometre) grain sizes range from 38 to 43 micrometres.
  • All copper is hosted by chalcopyrite. Chalcopyrite P50 (micrometre) grain sizes range from 19 to 32 micrometres.
  • Potential chalcopyrite recoveries range from 84.6 to 92.5% based on liberation, association and exposure characteristics of crushed samples stage pulverized to 90% passing 150 micrometres.
  • Pentlandite and pyrite are the main hosts of the cobalt in the samples.

North American Nickel CEO, Keith Morrison, states: "The results from the 2015 samples are consistent with previous results, confirming that pentlandite contains greater than 90% of the total nickel in samples collected from multiple mineralized target areas and that potential pentlandite recoveries are high at greater than 95%. The nickel deportment and potential pentlandite recovery results for the cumulative QEMSCAN and EMPA work completed to date on the project show a high degree of consistency for mineralization extending the length of the Greenland Norite from Pingo in the north to P-053 in the south."

SUMMARY OF KEY STUDY RESULTS

Five representative drill core samples were collected in 2015 from new intersections of nickel-copper sulphides at the P-013, P-032 and P-053 targets and were submitted to SGS Canada Inc. in Burnaby, BC for detailed mineralogical study (see Table 1 and Figure 1).

Mineralogical analysis was conducted by QEMSCAN (Quantitative Evaluation of Minerals by Scanning Electron Microscopy), X-ray Diffraction (XRD) and Electron Microprobe Analysis (EMPA). Samples were analyzed both as core pieces (for mineral texture) and also stage pulverised to 90% passing 150 micrometres for modal mineralogy, grain size and process mineralogy characteristics (liberation, association and exposure).

Key results of the study are summarized below. Further details including sample preparation, methodology, technical definitions, modal analyses, and details of mineral chemistry as well as liberation, association and exposure characteristics can be found in the SGS report posted on the NAN website.

Table 1: Mineralized Samples from Maniitsoq Exploration Targets used in the Mineralogical Study

Sample
Name
Target
Area
Hole # Ni
(%)
Cu
(%)
Co
(%)
Comments
D01618 P-013 MQ-15-079 3.41 0.15 0.08 Massive sulphides
D01619 P-013 MQ-15-094 2.89 0.32 0.08 Patchy, semi-massive sulphides in norite
D01620 P-053 MQ-15-082 3.58 0.18 0.13 Massive breccia sulphides
D01621 P-053 MQ-15-084 2.83 0.34 0.21 Massive breccia sulphides
D01622 P-032 MQ-15-090 3.93 0.44 0.11 Semi-massive sulphides in norite

Modal Analyses

The modal mineral abundances were determined in both drill core pieces and in crushed samples. Sulphide minerals comprise pyrrhotite, pentlandite, pyrite and chalcopyrite and the main silicate minerals are orthopyroxene, amphibole, clinopyroxene and feldspars. The presence of talc (~5%) was confirmed by XRD analysis for the sample D01618 from target P-013.

Grain size

The D50 (micrometre) passing values determined on the crushed samples are presented in Table 2. This value is defined as the medium grain size within the sample where 50% of the particles are coarser and 50% of the particles are finer than the particle size stated.

Table 2: D50 Grain Size Distribution

Mineral D50 Sample ID
(micrometre) D 01618 D 01619 D 01620 D 01621 D 01622
Pentlandite 43 38 40 41 41
Chalcopyrite 19 23 32 27 29
Fe-Sulphides 46 51 52 56 44
Hard Silicates 43 55 48 49 55
Soft Silicates 25 19 15 17 14
Carbonates 16 16 17 21 16
Oxides 14 13 13 13 12
Particle 48 55 50 52 51

Nickel, Copper and Cobalt Deportment

Elemental deportment for nickel, copper and cobalt in each sample were calculated using the EMPA and QEMSCAN data and are shown (in wt %) in Table 3. On average, pentlandite accounts for > 90% of the total nickel in each sample. Pyrrhotite accounts for 4-8% of the total nickel and silicate minerals account for the remainder. Chalcopyrite carries 100% of the copper. Pentlandite and pyrite are the main carriers of cobalt.

Table 3: Summary of Nickel, Cobalt and Copper Deportment

Element Mineral D 01618 D 01619 D 01620 D 01621 D 01622
Nickel (Ni) Pentlandite 94.5 94.4 91.9 93.4 95.2
Pyrrhotite 4.90 4.94 7.67 5.92 4.36
Orthopyroxene 0.15 0.25 0.10 0.08 0.22
Clinopyroxene 0.05 0.10 0.04 0.05 0.11
Amphibole 0.25 0.32 0.32 0.54 0.13
Biotite/Phlogopite 0.01 0.02 0.01 0.01 0.00
Talc 0.17 0.01 0.01 0.01 0.02
Copper (Cu) Chalcopyrite 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0
Cobalt (Co) Pentlandite 76.6 79.6 79.2 26.4 86.5
Pyrite 23.4 20.4 20.8 73.6 13.5

Potential Recovery of Pentlandite and Chalcopyrite

The potential recovery characteristics of pentlandite and chalcopyrite for the sample suite are summarized in Table 4. Potentially recoverable pentlandite ranges from 96.7 to 98%. Potentially recoverable chalcopyrite ranges from 84.6 to 92.5%.

Potential recovery is the percent of the mineral (not value metal) that can potentially be recovered through flotation to produce a rougher concentrate. It is calculated using liberation, association and exposure of the grains (on a two dimensional surface area) and is used as a predictive tool to benchmark samples.

The following results are based on the mineralogical analysis and do not reflect other recovery factors that could occur in the actual metallurgical processes and should only be used as a guide to the metallurgical performance.

Table 4: Summary of Potential Recovery for Pentlandite and Chalcopyrite

Mineral Potential Recovery D01618 D01619 D01620 D01621 D01622
Pentlandite Potentially Recoverable 96.7 97.0 97.0 98.0 97.3
Non Recoverable 3.3 3.0 3.0 2.0 2.7
Chalcopyrite Potentially Recoverable 85.8 84.6 92.5 91.1 92.0
Non Recoverable 14.2 15.4 7.5 8.9 8.0

Qualified Person

Expert services relating to the mineralogical study were provided by SGS Canada Inc. in Burnaby, BC under the supervision of Mr. Jake Lang (B.E.Sc) and Ms. Sarah Prout (PhD), Manager of Metallurgy and Senior Mineralogist, respectively, with SGS. The information in this release was reviewed and prepared under the direction of Patricia Tirschmann, P. Geo, Vice President of Exploration for NAN, who is a qualified person as defined by National Instruments 43-101.

About North American Nickel

North American Nickel is a mineral exploration company with 100% owned properties in Maniitsoq, Greenland and Sudbury, Ontario.

The Maniitsoq property in Greenland is a Camp scale project comprising 2,985 square km covering numerous high-grade nickel-copper sulphide occurrences associated with norite and other mafic-ultramafic intrusions of the Greenland Norite Belt (GNB). The >75km-long belt is situated along, and near, the southwest coast of Greenland accessible from the existing Seqi deep water port (See NAN News Release dated January 19, 2015) with an all year round shipping season and abundant hydro-electric potential.

The Post Creek/Halcyon property in Sudbury is strategically located adjacent to the past producing Podolsky copper-nickel-platinum group metal deposit of KGHM International Ltd. The property lies along the extension of the Whistle Offset dyke structure. Such geological structures host major Ni-Cu-PGM deposits and producing mines within the Sudbury Camp.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements

This press release contains certain "forward-looking statements" and "forward-looking information" under applicable securities laws concerning the business, operations and financial performance and condition of the Company. Forward-looking statements and forward-looking information include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to the impact of mineralogy, estimation of mineral resources at mineral projects of the Company; economics of production; success of exploration activities; the future economics of minerals including nickel and copper; synergies and financial impact facilities; the benefits of the development potential of the properties of the Company and currency exchange rate fluctuations. Except for statements of historical fact relating to the Company, certain information contained herein constitutes forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are frequently characterized by words such as "plan," "expect," "project," "intend," "believe," "anticipate", "estimate" and other similar words, or statements that certain events or conditions "may" or "will" occur. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the statements are made, and are based on a number of assumptions and subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Many of these assumptions are based on factors and events that are not within the control of the Company and there is no assurance they will prove to be correct.

Factors that could cause actual results to vary materially from results anticipated by such forward-looking statements include variations in metal grades, changes in market conditions, variations in recovery rates, risks relating to international operations, fluctuating metal prices and currency exchange rates, and other risks of the mining industry, including but not limited to the failure of plant, equipment or processes to operate as anticipated. The Company cautions that the foregoing list of important factors is not exhaustive. Investors and others who base themselves on forward-looking statements should carefully consider the above factors as well as the uncertainties they represent and the risk they entail. The Company believes that the expectations reflected in those forward-looking statements are reasonable, but no assurance can be given that these expectations will prove to be correct and such forward-looking statements included in this press release should not be unduly relied upon. These statements speak only as of the date of this press release. The Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances or management's estimates or opinions should change except as required by applicable securities laws.

Although the Company 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 anticipated, estimated or intended. Statements concerning mineral reserve and resource estimates may also be deemed to constitute forward-looking statements to the extent they involve estimates of the mineralization that will be encountered if the property is developed.

Statements about the Company's future expectations and all other statements in this press release other than historical facts are "forward looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and as that term defined in the Private Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company intends that such forward-looking statements be subject to the safe harbours created thereby. Since these statements involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, the Company's actual results may differ materially from the expected results.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Mark Fedikow, President, North American Nickel Inc.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

To view Figure 1, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/nan0411fig1.pdf.

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