Rubidium is an element used in the manufacture of solar panels, electric vehicle (EV) batteries, and other types of batteries; as well as telecommunications systems and medical tech; a range of products for which demand is expected to steadily increase.
Rubidium improves the efficiency of solar panels, according to Swiss research. The continued development of electrification initiatives around the world, Krakatoa notes, opens up future markets for rubidium and caesium.
Mordor Intelligence states the rubidium market will grow between 2022 and 2027 with a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of over 4%.
At the moment, Krakatoa notes, one kilogram of rubidium is worth US$1,092, which makes a ton of rubidium worth US$1m.
What is notable is that Krakatoa has consistently found higher grades of rubidium than lithium, and rubidium is what the company is principally targeting in its current strategy.
Many high-grade lithium operations in Australia boasting estimates with lithium concentrations greater than 1% are considered high-grade.
While Krakatoa’s first batch of assays do not hit this threshold, it’s worth considering a vast system of low-grade mineralisation can be more valuable than a project with a small high-grade deposit.
Typically, Rubidium results over 1% concentration are also considered high grade. Also worth taking note of is the relatively shallow depth of some of today’s hits.
Compare that to the following:
70m @ 0.23% rubidium from 82m depth
37m @ 0.21% rubidium from 62m depth
06m @ 0.45% rubidium from 62m depth
26m @ 0.19% rubidium from 33m depth
15m @ 0.17% rubidium from 14m depth
With these results now firmly in hand (the company has been waiting since June for its total catalogue of samples to come back,) Krakatoa is moving ahead to the publication of a maiden JORC-compliant resource estimate.
The publication of that document is tipped for the December 2022 quarter, though an exact date is not given.
Once that resource is booked, the company will move ahead with the next stage of drilling at King Tamba, set to commence in early 2023. Drilling will be conducted after a second geochemical surface sample campaign winds up on-site.
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