Lithium Australia NL has expanded its extensive holdings in Western Australia by completing formalities on an option over the Youanmi lithium project located in the Archean Yilgarn Block, 450 km northeast of Perth.
- Option to acquire the Youanmi Lithium Project now formalised
- The project features extensive lithium mineralisation and outcropping pegmatites
- It represents a potential feed source for generation 3 pilot plant operations
- Vanadium mineralisation identified within host greenstone sequence.
The project, consisting of three exploration licences, is host to abundant lithium pegmatites that intrude layered mafic rocks, as shown in the picture.
Those three exploration licences were secured through completion of a binding heads of agreement with private exploration company Diversity Resources Pty, which has now been formalised.
The project is at an early stage. Initial work has included prospecting, a review of past work, geological inspections, geological mapping, rock-chip sampling, minor orientation geochemistry, digital terrain modelling, acquisition and interpretation of publicly available aeromagnetic and radiometric images, GPS topographic surveying, CAD drafting and creation of a database.
That work revealed occurrences of lithium-bearing pegmatites over a strike length of almost 3 km and a width of at least 200 m. Rock sampling has confirmed both the presence of potentially economic lithium values (up to 4.2% Li2O) and anomalous tantalum values. So far, the lithium mineral in the pegmatites inspected is lepidolite. Regional zoning patterns in pegmatites elsewhere suggest that spodumene may also occur there.
Most of the area around the known pegmatite locations is covered by sheetwash and it is likely that the lithium pegmatites are far more extensive than those few outcrops. An unexplained magnetic low beneath the main area of pegmatite dykes suggests the possibility of a larger pegmatite mass beneath.
Lithium Australia Managing Director Adrian Griffin: “Recent advances in our battery technology demonstrate that materials such as lepidolite, which is abundant at Youanmi, can be processed to produce viable precursors for lithium-ion batteries. We’ve not only proved the theory but made the batteries – and done so without needing to use lithium carbonate or lithium hydroxide. We’re committed to the integration of these advanced battery technologies, to improve the sustainability of the energy storage industry as a whole.”