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Si6 Metals to light up “Lithium Valley” with new Brazil drill blitz

Si6 Metals will drill for lithium and rare earths – both critical to the clean energy transition. Credit: File

Si6 Metals (ASX: SI6) has detailed plans to kick off its third drilling program in Brazil’s renowned “Lithium Valley”, with 20 auger holes to be plunged as the company homes in on lithium and rare earths soil anomalies thrown up by previous programs.

The drilling effort has been designed to follow up on a 103 parts per million lithium hit in the north-east of the Padre Paraiso prospect area and a 710ppm total rare earth oxides (TREO) strike in the south-east. Padre Paraiso sits in the southern portion of Si6’s Lithium Valley tenement holding, which is in the north of Brazil’s Minas Gerias region, about 500km north of Rio de Janeiro.

The company says the auger program will drill holes at a spacing of 400m at Padre Paraiso and to an average depth of about 12m. It aims to also provide data on the regolith profile on thorium anomalies uncovered by previous soil sampling.

This project area is well located near some major Lithium discoveries including Sigma Lithium Corp’s world-class Grota Do Cirilo project, which sits 40km from our license. The area is also highly prospective for REE. Si6 now has three drilling programs occurring concurrently at three of our 10 joint venture projects in Brazil.
Si6 Metals managing director Jim Malone

Management says the auger program will run in conjunction with two clay-hosted rare earths drill campaigns currently taking place at its two Caldera projects at the Poços de Caldas alkaline complex in southern Minas Gerais.

In March this year, the company announced rare earths hits as high as 933ppm TREO from clays at Poços de Caldas, with an average of 24 per cent of the high-value magnetic rare earth oxides (MREO) – and more assays are on the way.

More high-grade results were unearthed in the eastern portion of the project area, with four of them averaging 843ppm TREO. Importantly, the high-value magnetic rare earths that are typically used in electric vehicle (EV) motors comprised an average of 94 per cent of the sought-after elements, neodymium and praseodymium.

The two light rare earths are a primary component of the industrial magnets that are widely used in electric and hybrid motors and generators, clean energy technologies and wind turbines. They are both critical to the clean energy transition and have been the focus of rare earths projects globally as their application has dived into the limelight.

The upcoming “close look” at Padre Paraiso comes just weeks after the company secured a second 54-square-kilometre rare earths-prospective license at Caldera, in an area that borders Meteoric Resources’ massive Caldeira project where an inferred mineral resource of 409 million tonnes at 2626ppm TREO has been established.

Si6’s Caldera project is also near Viridis Mining & Minerals’ compelling Colossus project where that company has produced several stunning ionic-clay hits as high as a ridiculous 24,894ppm and 25,075ppm. It has also discovered even higher grades at depth.

Notably, Viridis made headlines today with news of what it says are “world-record” rare earths recoveries as high as 67 per cent in maiden bulk composite metallurgical testing of clays from Colossus, giving confidence to the downstream success case.

Sigma is the major lithium player in the area, with its mammoth Grota Do Cirilo project sitting tantalisingly close to Si6’s Lithium Valley turf – just 40km away. The deposit boasts a high-confidence mineral reserve of 54.8 million tonnes at 1.44 per cent lithium oxide.

There will no doubt be plenty of auger results coming out of Si6 in the coming weeks and months as assays flow back to the company geologist and then to the market.

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