‘Fast track’ option for IronClad’s SA project
IronClad Mining has announced it will fast track the development of its Wilcherry Hill Iron Ore Project on SA’s Eyre Peninsula, focusing on the production of near surface, Direct Shipping Ore (DSO) grade (+60 per cent Fe), high quality, low impurity, magnetite.
Exploration team at IronClad's Wilcherry Hill Iron Ore Project in SA
IronClad’s immediate objective is to define enough iron ore of direct shipping grade to enable an early, low cost entry into iron ore production.
The existence of near surface high grade DSO material at both Weednanna and Weednanna North prospects was identified by earlier drilling. Further drilling will now be undertaken to fully quantify these important resources.
IronClad recently discovered outcropping ironstone over a strike length of approximately 150 metres (approx. 40 metres width) at Ultima Dam West. Six samples taken from along the outcrop returned an average grade of 60.1 per cent Fe (range 56.7 per cent Fe to 65.0 per cent Fe). The average calcined grade is 61.6 per cent Fe. Typically, impurity levels are very low.
The area defined by the outcrop and the aeromagnetic anomaly at Ultima Dam West represents the strongest magnetic signature anywhere within the entire Wilcherry Hill Project area. Ground magnetic traverses and detailed magnetic modelling have been undertaken.
A resource statement, released in December last year, by independent consultants Golder & Associates also pointed to the Ultima Dam West prospect as an area of additional significant potential for high quality crystalline iron ore resources
A drill rig has been contracted and mobilised in order to begin drilling this important DSO target.
In addition to the DSO magnetite potential identified at Weednanna, Weednanna North and Ultima Dam West, IronClad is also currently interrogating its extensive data base in order to identify additional near surface DSO potential elsewhere in the Wilcherry Hill project area.
Furthermore, the Company, in collaboration with its metallurgical consultants, is developing a range of dry beneficiation tests designed to upgrade its sub DSO magnetite (45 per cent Fe to 59.9 per cent Fe) to a saleable product at the lowest cost.
IronClad previously announced, on December 22nd 2008, a JORC compliant resource of 60 million tonnes of high quality crystalline magnetite iron ore at Wilcherry Hill (35 million tonnes in the indicated category and 25 million tonnes in the inferred category). This ore, which is very low in contaminants, is generally suitable for low cost beneficiation with concentrate grades likely to exceed 67 per cent Fe.
In addition, the company also announced an initial JORC compliant resource of 215 million tonnes of Banded Iron Formation (BIF) magnetite ore (all in the inferred category) at the adjacent Hercules Project. Hercules has an exploration target of an additional 500-1,000 million tonnes of similar style ore.
IronClad continues to push ahead with plans to develop both the Wilcherry Hill and Hercules Projects to supply markets in China and elsewhere in expanding Asian markets. The company has a memorandum of understanding with the Wuhan Iron and Steel Corporation of China (WISCO) which contemplates co-operative development.
IronClad is continuing its in-house feasibility study which contemplates development based, initially, on the sale of a high grade product from Wilcherry Hill with later, larger scale production from Hercules.
The company is also proceeding with native title and heritage clearances and approvals are underway for the conversion of exploration leases to mining leases.