Creating Wealth, Opportunities & Investments

Catamarca, Argentina

 

  • On 31 May 2016 the Company announced it had made claim applications over 70,000 hectares in seven exploration tenements in the Catamarca Province, prospective for Lithium Pegmatites.

  • Following extinction of a series of abandoned claims by the Mining Authority of Catamarca, Latin has applied for additional exploration tenements over 7,051.6 hectares that were surrounded by the initial exploration tenement applications in two areas, Vilisman and Ancasti, each with past Lithium mining activity and that together host in excess of twenty Lithium bearing pegmatite deposits documented by various authors in publications made over the last 50 years.

  • Combined estimates of Spodumene content within 15m of surface of 12 of these deposits subject of the latest claim applications are in excess of 120,000 t (Acosta et al 1988, Balmaceda & Kaniefsy 1982 and other non-JORC foreign publications).

  • These Lithium bearing pegmatite deposits have a history of small scale past production, having been intermittently exploited for Lithium minerals, and associated Beryl, Tantalum and feldspars during the 1950’s and 1970’s.

  • Analysis of four samples collected by Latin geologists of exposures of spodumene in old mine workings in three pegmatite deposits within the new claim applications reported grades of 6.6%, 7.1%, 6.3% and 4.9% Li2O respectively.

The two tenements cover the Vilisman and Ancasti Pegmatite Groups referred to in the Company’s announcement of 31 May 2016, and each host a number of well documented Lithium bearing pegmatites near the townships of Ancasti and Vilisman (Figure 2), each located on the eastern slopes of the Ancasti Ranges some 40 km from the Provincial Capital, San Fernando del Valle de Catamarca (Figure 1).

Figure 1: Location of the mining friendly Catamarca Province, its capital, and the Ancasti Ranges in NW Argentina.

 

Pegmatites of the Ancasti Ranges:

 

Various studies of pegmatites in the Ancasti Ranges have been reviewed: Herrera (1964), Rossi (1965), Fernández Lima et al. (1970), Marconi (1972), Balmaceda (1982), Balmaceda and Kaniefsky (1982), Lottner (1983), Acosta et al. (1988) and Galliski (1992a, 1994a, 1994b).

Acosta et al (1988) grouped a series of lithium-bearing pegmatites occurrences in the Ancasti Ranges into two groups, geographically located within several kilometres of each of the Vilisman and Ancasti townships. 

Figure 2: Location of the Vilisman and Ancasti Lithium Pegmatite Groups, (Solid red areas), with old mines marked. Latin’s claim applications now cover the orange shaded areas extending outwards from, and also including the known Lithium deposits.

The Vilisman Group hosts at least 8 pegmatite deposits that have evidence of past mining activity.  Six of these are individual dykes emplaced along structures in banded mica schists, while two are formed as multiple dykes.  Most of the dykes outcrop over at least 100 m of strike length with thicknesses of between 1 m and 5 m (Table 1).  Acosta et al (1988) mentions 11 other deposits in the Vilisman Group that were visited as part of this work, but cites insufficient data preventing their inclusion in the tabulated list, despite having observed good mineralisation and workings.

Table 1: Dimensions and estimated spodumene content within 15 m of surface in pegmatites from the Vilisman Group (after Acosta et al 1988).

Cautionary Statement: These data are published historical foreign estimates not reported in accordance with the JORC Code. A competent person has not done sufficient work to verify the data in accordance with the JORC code and it is uncertain that following evaluation and/or further exploration work that these foreign estimates will be able to be reported in accordance with the JORC Code.

Data from Acosta et al (1988) and Balmaceda & Kaniefsky (1982) were compiled to prepare a table for the pegmatites of the Ancasti Group (Table 2) comparable to that presented for the Vilisman Group after Acosta et al (1988) (Table 1).  These are individual dykes emplaced along structures in banded mica schists with well differentiated zoning. There are apparently fewer identified Lithium pegmatite deposits in the Ancasti group but these are relatively larger in terms of strike length and width relative to those of the Vilisman Group.

Table 2: Dimensions and estimated spodumene content within 15 m of surface in pegmatites from the Ancasti Group (after data from Acosta et al, 1988 and Balmaceda & Kaniefsky, 1982).

Cautionary Statement: These data are published historical foreign estimates not reported in accordance with the JORC Code. A competent person has not done sufficient work to verify the data in accordance with the JORC code and it is uncertain that following evaluation and/or further exploration work that these foreign estimates will be able to be reported in accordance with the JORC Code.

Analytical Results from Latin Sampling

 

Latin geologists collected 4 samples from spodumene exposures in the intermediate zone of pegmatites exposed in old workings on a visit to the area in May 2016 (Table 3).

Table 3 – Analytical Results of Spodumene samples collected by Latin Geologists from old Mine Workings.

Results confirm Lithium content typical of Spodumene exposed to minor weathering due to surface exposure to the elements.

 

Historical Foreign Estimates of Mineralisation

 

The historical foreign estimates of mineralisation in Tables 1 & 2 are modified from data published in Acosta et al (1988) and Balmaceda & Kaniefsk (1982), both Spanish language publications translated as follows:

Acosta et al (1988): “Geoeconomic Study of Pegmatites” and was undertaken by the Provincial Government of Catamarca as part of an agreement between the Department of Mines and the [Argentine] Federal Council of Investment.

Balmaceda & Kaniefsky (1982): “Characterisation of two Spodumene Pegmatites located in Catamarca and San Luis, Argentina” published in the Acts of the Fifth Latin American Geology Congress in Argentina in 1982.

These authors undertook field work including descriptions and mapping of the geology, mineralogy and measurements of size of the Lithium bearing pegmatite dykes and their internal structure where these were encountered within the Vilisman and Ancasti Groups, within the tenement areas that have now been applied for by the Company.  The works also included details of trenching and modal estimates of spodumene (lithium silicate) content within the different mineralised zones of each pegmatite.  This method of estimation of spodumene mineral content is considered appropriate considering the large size (up to 1 m) of the spodumene crystals and subsequent difficulty in obtaining representative samples to estimate grade through chemical analysis.

The historical foreign estimates as presented do not use categories of mineralisation and are considered by the Company to be only indicative of the mineralisation style and estimated according to the terms presented: considering strike length and thickness of the respective pegmatite bodies, qualified by a modal estimate of spodumene content to a relatively conservative depth extent.  Tonnages are arrived at by calculating a volume of spodumene within the overall pegmatite body by simple mathematics and then applying a nominal and theoretical density to the volume of Spodumene estimated.

Santa Gertrudis Mine Workings (Ancasti Group)