Sovereign Metals shares were up 3.8% to 32.2p in late morning trading on Wednesday, after the firm announced the start of its major pre-feasibility study (PFS) drill program at Kasiya.
Kasiya is the largest discovered rutile deposit in the world, and boasts a Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) of 1.8 billion tonnes at 1.01% rutile, which confirmed the operation as a Tier one deposit and a potential significant source of low CO2 footprint natural rutile and natural graphite.
Sovereign Metals reported that its 1,200 metre drilling programme at Kasiya had commenced to upgrade higher-grade Mineral Resource areas to underpin conversion to Reserves, in line with its planned PFS.
The programme is set to include deeper drilling to target extensions to Indicated zones at depth to the base of saprolite at 25 metres, from the current 14 metre average drill depth.
The schedule consists of a 10,000 metre aircore (AC) programme on a 200 metre by 200 metre grid to target Indicated classification, which is projected to convert to Probable Reserves as part of the PFS.
The company added that it was also commencing a core drilling programme across Inferred sections of the MRE, targeting nearer-surface, high grade sectors for conversation to Indicated and Measured resources.
Sovereign Metals further added that the expansion of the overall mineralised footprint via extensional and regional hand-auger drilling would continue with multiple drill teams, in a move to expand the overall mineralised footprint and record additional high-grade rutile zones.
The mining group said the low cost and low impact of the hand-auger drilling technique had proven an incredibly useful exploration tool in the initial delineation of the Kasiya project’s rutile and graphite MRE.
Sovereign Metals mentioned that its updated Scoping Study with the incorporation of the current resource was scheduled for completion in the coming weeks, which is set to build on its initial Scoping Study announced in December 2021.
The updated Study will apparently incorporate the significant increase in the MRE tonnage as reported in April 2022, including the assessment of higher grade output, increased production rates and longer mine life.