Two sets of independent test work have seen ASX-listed Greenland Minerals (ASX:GGG) deliver a significant bump in rare earth grades from its Kvanefjeld project in southern Greenland and shoot its share price to an intra-day high of 9.2 cents per share, up six percent.
The recent test work completed by two different companies using varied floatation technologies have both produced concentrate grades approaching 25% Rare Earth Oxides (REO), well above the 14% REO achieved by the company to date.
Greenland Minerals is developing the highly touted Kvanefjeld project, which is projected to be one of the world’s largest producers of rare earths, holding so called “magnet metals”: neodymium, praseodymium, dysprosium and terbium. Mineral processing is also anticipated to include by-production of uranium and zinc.
The twin test results were completed by The Institute of Multipurpose Utilisation of Mineral Resources – Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences (IMUMR) and Baotou Meng Rong Fine Materials (BTMR), which are both Chinese companies with extensive experience in rare earth concentration using froth flotation techniques.
Greenland reports that a locked cycle methodology was used, which uses a number of batch flotation tests performed in series to mimic the activities at a commercial plant.
BTMR initially outperformed IMUMR, although its locked cycle test work, which is yet to be optimised, only posted modest increases in REO recovery. IMUMR was able to improve the flotation performance of the batch test work results. Both results were highly encouraging.
Further positive results from ongoing optimisation have Kvanefjeld on track to be one of the simplest, lowest-cost rare earth producers globally,” Greenland Minerals Managing Director Dr John Mair said.
“We are determining the preferred method that we will look to de-risk at pilot plant scale in the coming months.
“Further confirmation of an increase in concentrate grade toward 25% REO and the significant increase in contained value, creates the potential to stage development through an initial export of mineral concentrate,” he said.
Greenland Minerals will continue to purse test work in China and will then complete a validation process in Perth later this month to determine the preferred processing method.
The preferred method will then be evaluated at pilot plant scale.