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Future Battery Minerals completes $10m nickel project sale

Updated: Apr 19

Future Battery Minerals has cashed in some of its nickel chips to fund a two country lithium chase. Credit: File

Future Battery Minerals will bank a cool $8 million after its subsidiary completed the sale of a trio of tenements within the Nepean nickel project, where it is an 80 per cent-owner, in Western Australia’s Eastern Goldfields region.

Management says the deal now sees it fully-funded for planned exploration activities at its joint venture lithium projects – the Kangaroo Hills lithium project in the Goldfields and the Nevada lithium project in the United States.

The completion of the deal triggered a $2.7 million cash consideration, which has been received and banked alongside a $100,000 deposit paid on signing. The remaining $7.2 million will arrive in three instalments across the next two years.

Rocktivity Nepean is the new owner of the tenements after coming to an agreement with Future Battery and 20 per cent owner Goldfellas, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lodestar Minerals.

Future Battery will use some of the funds from the sale for work on its 80 per cent-owned Kangaroo Hills project that sits about 17km south of Coolgardie. It will include step-out drilling at the Big Red prospect to test for extensions, in addition to testing other newly-identified prospects, ongoing target generation using geophysics and metallurgical testwork.

The new cash will also be spent at its Nevada lithium project on a phase-two reverse-circulation (RC) drilling program at its Western Flats and Lone Mountain prospects, in addition to systematic testing of three other targets.

In May, Future Battery outlined a series of lithium prospects from shallow results in high-priority assays taken during a second-phase RC drilling program at Kangaroo Hills.

It revealed assay highlights featuring a wide 27m hit going 1.32 per cent lithium oxide from 64m, including a 4m section at an impressive 2.5 per cent lithium oxide from 80m.

Additional results include 19m grading 1.03 per cent lithium oxide from 42m, 16m at 1.09 per cent lithium oxide from 11m and a 12m hit going 1.02 per cent lithium oxide from just 8m.

The assays came from holes planned as immediate step-outs to the north, south and east from the company’s initial discovery hole at the project that returned a 29m segment reading 1.38 per cent lithium oxide from 38m in March this year.

Known as Auroch Minerals before a name change in March this year, Future Battery maintains an impressive portfolio with a focus on minerals critical to present and future battery needs.

The company’s flagship Saints nickel sulphide project sits 70km north of Kalgoorlie and hosts a high-grade komatiite nickel sulphide deposit. Last year, Future Battery upgraded its resource to a JORC 2012-compliant 911,000 tonnes at 2.3 per cent nickel, 0.17 per cent copper and 0.07 per cent cobalt for 21,000 tonnes of nickel, 1500 tonnes of copper and 600 tonnes of cobalt.

The resource is mainly in the indicated category, with a scoping study into the viability of an underground mining operation set to lead to an ongoing prefeasibility study and further exploration at the site.

Saints comprises two mining leases covering an area of about 20 square kilometres of prospective Archaean greenstone belt geology within the Eastern Goldfields province of the Yilgarn Craton. The operation sits in the same sequence of rocks as the historical Scotia nickel mine that produced 30,800 tonnes of contained nickel at 2.2 per cent nickel before closing in 1977.

Future Battery also holds 100 per cent of highly-prospective exploration ground at the Leinster nickel project in WA, in addition to 90 per cent interests in the Arden, Bonaventura and Torrens base metals projects in South Australia. The company is continuing to explore the projects with the aim of discovering significant mineralisation.

With a fresh wad of cash stuffed in its back pocket, Future Battery will be hoping it can turn it into even greater riches with some shrewd exploration across its two projects in the coming months.

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