The James Bay region of Quebec, Canada is undeniably the hottest lithium jurisdiction at present, renowned for its rapid pace of discoveries and tight cluster of world-class lithium projects.
Oceana Lithium (ASX: OCN) acquired the Monaro Lithium Project back in July. This covers an area of 104km2 including 40km of contiguous greenstones, a type of rock that is often rich in lithium-bearing minerals.
The company has now completed its first phase of field exploration, identifying over 356 new areas for lithium-bearing pegmatite targets as well as submitting 175 rock samples to the laboratory for analysis.
Given the extensive data gathered, we asked the following questions to Chief Executive Caue Araujo to understand the significance of this discovery, the key aspects investors should pay attention to, and the company's future plans within the prolific lithium jurisdiction.
Market cap: $7.4 million
Cash: $4.7 million as of 30 September 2023
Major focus: Lithium exploration
Projects: Solonopole Project in Brazil, Monaro Project in Quebec, Canada and Napperby Project in the Northern Territory, Australia
Interesting fact: Monaro sits within close proximity to several high-profile projects owned by Patriot Battery Metals, Winsome Resources and Rio Tinto.
After completion of the first phase of field exploration program, Oceana identified elevated levels of Rubidium (Rb) and low Potassium (K) to Rubidium ratios coincident with favourable geology and magnetic signatures have delineated several high-priority Lithium targets for further investigation.
This is an important milestone of our systematic exploration program, and we look forward to receiving the results next month for the 175 rock samples submitted to ALS Laboratories in Val-d’Or, Québec for whole-rock analysis.
Yes, Oceana has identified over 356 new pegmatite targets to date. Of these, 317 have been ground checked, leading to the discovery of 131 new pegmatite bodies and 68 pegmatite boulders.
Monaro’s geology containing both amphibolites and wacke para-gneiss fits well within the current LCT pegmatite spodumene-bearing targeting model for the James Bay area.
Some of the pegmatites mapped to date are over 1km long and up to 80m wide.
The XRF measurement of field samples has established four zones with low K/Rb ratio in relation to geology, including two from outcrops and one boulder with samples showing K/Rb < 30, and clear geochemical trends of highly fractionated pegmatites.
These are consistent with established models of fractionated pegmatites and Lithium fertility, which means that these high priority areas are more prospective for hosting Lithium mineralisation.
Drill-ready outcrop targets for first phase drilling will be identified once the whole rock results are received in December 2023. At the same time, we are planning for further focused geophysics, channel sampling and soil/till sampling campaign over the highly evolved pegmatite areas to identify additional Lithium-bearing drill targets.
Prior to that, it is important that our shareholders vote on the issue of performance rights forming part of the deferred consideration exercise price for the acquisition of the Monaro Project at the forthcoming AGM to be held on 28 November 2023.
The Directors have unanimously recommended that shareholders vote in favour of the issue of these performance rights (refer to section 6 of Explanatory Statement to Notice of Meeting, ASX Announcement dated 27 October 2023).
This will allow the company to, should it wish to exercise the Monaro Option, issue the Consideration Securities.
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