Graphite Property Development
The Lochaber Graphite Project
SRK Consulting's NI 43-101 Resource Estimate established an initial Inferred resource of 4MM tonnes at 4% at the Lochaber Graphite Project
The Lochaber Graphite Project is located just 30km east of Ottawa
Bulk sampled at 57% Large Flake, including 44% Jumbo Flake
Purity tests yielded results in the range of 94.0% to 96.5% graphitic carbon.
The property features the historical Plumbago and Mayo mine sites and several graphite showings.
Hydrothermal vein graphite sample from Lochaber
The Lochaber Graphite Project represents an essential element of the Great Lakes Graphite business plan. Our small footprint, low CAPEX approach requires access to high quality natural graphite properties that are easily accessible with proximity to infrastructure.
A maiden resource estimate was completed in 2015, showing 4MM tonnes (inferred) at 4%, based on 7,000+ metres of drilling by the previous operator and 1,200 metres drilled in our Winter 2014/15 program. To view the report, click here.
The Lochaber Graphite Property is comprised of 45 mineral claims, in one contiguous block, covering 2,649 hectares in the Buckingham area on NTS maps 31G11. The property is located in the municipality of Mayo (Lochaber Township), east of the town of Buckingham, but is part of the MRC (La municipalité régionale de comté) of Papineau, Province of Quebec, Canada.
Numerous flake graphite occurrences on the property are some of the oldest graphite showings in Canada, having been discovered in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. There are three historical graphite occurrences (the “McLaren”, “Kelly” and “Burke” Showings) and two past producing graphite mines (the “Mayo” and “Plumbago” mines) distributed over an area covering 16km².
History of the Lochaber Graphite Property
The Ministére des Ressources Naturelles et Faune (“MRNF”) in Québec maintains records of past exploration and development work carried out on a mineral claim and filed for assessment credit purposes. Great Lakes Graphite has acquired from the vendor, all of the data associated with the historical exploration work. Highlights of the information review are:
- In 1867, a graphite mill was erected by the Lochia Plumbago Company on the Blanche River which processed the graphite material hauled from various mining properties in the area. During that time the mill was operated by the Kelly family.
- In 1941, a metallurgical test was carried out on a sample from the Kelly occurrence with a head grade of 21.17% carbon. The graphite material was concentrated by floatation, dried and screened on 65 mesh (0.212 mm), 120 mesh (0.125 mm) and 150 mesh (0.106 mm). 34.37% material was coarser than 0.212 millimetre (mm) size and assayed 87% carbon (GM14486: Canada Department of Mines and Resources, Ore Dressing and Metallurgical Laboratories Report on Investigation No. 1085, dated September 2nd, 1941).Similarly, a second sample with head grade of 23.53% carbon, concentrated by floatation, indicated 31.27% material coarser than 0.212 millimeter (mm) size and assayed 84.5% carbon (GM14485: Canada Department of Mines and Resources, Ore Dressing and Metallurgical Laboratories Report on Investigation No. 1084, dated August 30th, 1941).
- In 1985 and 1986, Bay Ressources and Services Inc. carried out an exploration program comprising 39 drill holes over 10,203 feet (3,110 metres) on the Kelly, McLaren and Burke occurrences, and modeled an historical resource estimate of 90,654 tons (or 82,240 tonnes) at 8% graphite or 59,609 tons (or 54,076 tonnes) at 10% graphite (source: GM 43058: Geological Report on the Bay Ressources & Services Inc., Graphite Deposit, Lochaber Township, Québec; dated April 1986).
- The author of the report (Daniele Heon, Geologist) estimated the tonnage for a volume grading 8% graphitic carbon (“Cg”) or 10% Cg using graphite intersections in the drill core. Each drill hole intersection was extrapolated to 25 feet (7.62 metres) on each side and the calculated volume was divided by a factor of 13 feet per ton used as specific gravity of marble, the graphite host rock.A qualified person has not done sufficient work to classify the historical estimates as current mineral resources and the Company is not treating the historical estimate as current mineral resources. The Company believes that the historic estimate is relevant to an appraisal of the merits of the property and forms a reliable basis upon which to develop future exploration programs.
- Flake size reported in the 1986 drilling report indicated 0.1 to 0.5 cm (source: GM 43058: Geological Report on the Bay Ressources & Services Inc., Graphite Deposit, Lochaber Township, Québec; dated April 1986).
The area is underlain by Precambrian age rocks of Granville Series comprised of quartzofeldspathic, garnetiferous paragneiss and limestone / marble beds. Quartzites are the least abundant of rocks in this Series. The igneous rocks which have invaded the metasedimentary sequence consist of gabbros, monzonites, anorthosites and diabase.
Graphite mineralization is associated with gneissic rocks in contact with limestone / marble in a shear zone. Regional strike of the rocks is north-south while the shear zone at the Plumbago mine pit has a strike N45⁰E and dip 70⁰ NW. Other controls of mineralization apparent in the trenches are the presence of diabase dykes and pegmatitic texture of marble and paragneiss. Graphite occurs as crystalline large flaky texture with a shiny metallic luster with flake size ranging from 1 to 3 millimeters (“mm”) and occasionally up to 5 mm. Distribution of graphite is irregular and mostly occurs as fracture filling or pockets.
Mineralization in the historical graphite showings is described below:
Kelly Showing – consists of two parallel zones explored about 90 metres along strike. One zone is approximately 8 metres wide while the second zone, located 3 metres to the east, is about 1.6 meters wide. These zones contain 15% to 20% coarse flake graphite.
Burke Showing – located approximately 500 metres to the north of the Kelly showing, this area is 1.3m to 3m wide and 120m long with 10% to 15% graphite. Some 450m to the West of this showing, graphite bearing muck was found which indicates that the Burke prospect may potentially continue further to the West along strike.
Plumbago Mine Showing – located about 5 kilometers to the South of Kelly showing. The graphite mineralization is in the form of coarse flakes within sheared paragneiss rocks. Flake graphite and slabs of graphite are widely disseminated in this zone with visual estimation of 10% to 15% graphite over an average width of 9 metres. Approximately 545 tonnes of graphite was mined from a 12 metre wide pit in this area.
In 2012-2013, an exploration program was developed and conducted by the previous operator. The exploration program included approximately 35 line-kilometres of ground geophysical work by Horizontal Loop Electromagnetic (HLEM) survey using a Max-Min instrument, field prospecting and limited geological mapping. Surface samples collected during that program indicate up to 22% Cg, with an average grade of over 10% Cg. The program was carried out on the Plumbago Mine area located in the Southern part of the property and in an important input to the resource estimate that is currently underway.
Based on the results of this work and historical exploration data, a program including trenching and drilling was conducted. The purpose of this program was to confirm the historical exploration work and discover new targets.
In August 2014 Great Lakes announced that a bulk sample consisting of approximately 300 Kg of graphite material recently gathered near the historic Plumbago Mine on the Lochaber Graphite Property had been delivered to Process Research ORTECH, a metallurgical facility specializing in graphite processing in Mississauga, Ontario. This sample is the first of an ongoing series, enhancing the Company’s understanding of the Lochaber resource. Tests run on the ore will include: mineral beneficiation studies, particle size distribution analysis, purity analysis and grade analysis. Assays for carbon content will be conducted by an independent third party.
The material for the initial sample was visually selected from waste piles at the historic Plumbago Mine site, located on the Lochaber property with the objective of retrieving high grade material and is in no way intended to be broadly representative of the mineralization that is the target of the ongoing resource estimate.
Senior Vice President of Great Lakes Graphite John Carter said “Testing of the material in this sample will provide invaluable data such as the quality of the flake and possibly lump for example, and will provide answers of what we need to begin the development of a PFD (Process Flow Diagram) or mill design. Mineral beneficiation tests will confirm whether this graphite can be easily upgraded to the purity levels required for lithium-ion batteries and other developing technologies.”
A field crew and diamond drilling equipment were mobilized to the Lochaber Graphite Project during the first week of December 2014 to carry out a drill program to provide additional data for the Resource Estimate and a contemplated Feasibility Study in the near future.
In preparation for this program, road access to the project area was upgraded. The program, now completed, was comprised of eight holes for a total of 1,200 metres. Data from the in-fill and step-out holes were incorporated with the results of the previous drilling on the property, as part of the process of preparing the Resource Estimate.
Mineral Resource Statement*, Lochaber Graphitic Carbon Project, Québec,
SRK Consulting (Canada) Inc., June 3 2015
|Resource Category||Quantity||Grade - Graphitic Carbon||Contained - Graphitic Carbon|
|('000 t)||(%)||('000 t)|
* Mineral resources are not mineral reserves and have not demonstrated economic viability. There is no guarantee that all or any part of the mineral resource will be converted into a mineral reserve. All figures are rounded to reflect the relative accuracy of the estimate. Composites have been capped where appropriate.
** Open pit mineral resources are reported at a cut-off grade of 2.45 percent graphitic carbon within a conceptual pit shell. Cut-off grades are based on a graphitic carbon price of US$1,600 per tonne and a metallurgical recovery of 96.5 percent. Pricing assumptions are based on market research and knowledge gathered during meetings with prospective customers. Benchmark Minerals recently quoted $1500 per tonne as the average price for large flake material. Small flake from Lochaber will be shipped to GLK’s Matheson Micronization Facility as feedstock for value-added graphite products that sell for well in excess of flake graphite prices.
Purity Test Results
|Graphite Class||Particle Size Distribution||Purity (%C)|
|Super Jumbo Flake/XXL||1.44%||96.50%|
|Jumbo Flake / XL||44.00%||96.40%|
|Total Large, Jumbo and Super Jumbo||57.64%|
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Between August 6 and September 4, 2012, the previous operator carried out 35.17 line-kilometres of a magnetic survey in addition to 33.7 line-kilometres of Horizontal Loop Electromagnetic (“HLEM”) surveying, using a Max-Min instrument, in the Plumbago area of the Property. Mr. Camille St-Hilaire, M.Sc. A., P.Geo. a consulting geophysicist from Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec, was contracted for the processing and interpretation of the geophysical survey data.
Interpretation of the magnetic survey data outlined several wide and intense magnetic anomalies referred to as M1 to M6 of which two anomalies, M3 and M4, are divided into many segments. All of these anomalies follow a north-northeast orientation.
Similarly, the HLEM survey mapped five north-south oriented conductors, referred to as conductors “A” through “E”, which are summarized below:
- Conductor A – 350m long, up to 110m wide, sub-vertical shallow (0 to 5m deep) conductor, strongly correlated with magnetic anomaly M1, priority 1 exploration target.
- Conductor B – 250m long, up to 30m wide, sub-vertical (dip 85° E) moderately deep (10 to 20m depth) conductor, partly correlated with magnetic anomaly M2, priority 1 exploration target.
- Conductor C – 800m long, up to 85m wide, sub-vertical (dip 85° W) shallow to moderately deep (0 to 27m depth) conductor, strong correlation with magnetic anomaly M3-1, priority 2 exploration target.
- Conductor D – 150m long, average 5m wide, thin and deep (40m depth), vertical conductor, partly correlated with magnetic anomaly M6, priority 3 exploration target.
- Conductor E – 180m long, up to 40m wide, vertical and deep (35m depth) conductor, partly correlated with magnetic anomaly M6, priority 3 exploration target.
The survey was conducted on traverses 50-metres spaced with an azimuth of N90°E with control-lines 100-metres spaced and oriented north-south. A GEM GSM-19 V7.0 Overhauser magnetometer (serial number 7022235) was used to acquire the Total Field Intensity magnetic data along grid lines. For electromagnetic survey, an Apex Parametrics (Uxbridge, Ontario) Max-Min 1-9 instrument (serial number 5309) was used.
The survey was conducted on traverses 50-metres spaced with an azimuth of N90⁰E with control-lines 100-metres spaced and oriented north-south. A GEM GSM-19 V7.0 Overhauser magnetometer (serial number 7022235) was used to acquire the Total Field Intensity magnetic data along grid lines. For electromagnetic survey, an Apex Parametrics (Uxbridge, Ontario) Max-Min 1-9 instrument (serial number 5309) was used.
Lochaber Core and Surface Samples
Hydrothermal Vein Graphite samples containing 98%+ graphitic carbon