American Rare Earths is a step closer to achieving its vision of being a leading producer of the critical minerals for the US market after receiving encouraging preliminary data from the maiden exploration drill program at Halleck Creek.
So far, high-grade XRF observations have ranged from more than 3,000ppm (parts per million) to a very significant 20,000ppm, with consistent rare earth element (REE) enrichment to at least 100m.
American Rare Earths (ASX:ARR) has now drilled 917m and collected 822 samples from nine holes in the Red Mountain Pluton area, with core recovery from most holes above 99%. The core samples have been sent to American Assay Labs for analysis, with full results expected in June or July.
The Australian-based company’s newly expanded Wyoming project has an exploration target estimated at 308 to 385 million tonnes of rare earth oxide (REO) mineralized ore, with high grades from 2,330 to 2,912 ppm total rare earth oxide (TREO).
Significantly, the site contains high value magnet rare earth elements neodymium and praseodymium (NdPr), as well as dysprosium and terbium, which are in red hot demand for the permanent magnets used in electric vehicles, wind turbines and other green energy technology.
However the full suite of REEs, used in a long shopping list of products from electronic devices to fighter jets, are found at Halleck Creek in a group of minerals called allanite.
Even more encouraging is that the Halleck Creek allanite is associated with clinopyroxene quartz monzonite (CQM) rocks, which generally contain the highest REE grades.
MD and CEO Chris Gibbs commented: “We are extremely excited about what we are seeing at this world class project as it continues to exceed our expectations.
“The information from these drill holes will determine the regional extent of mineralized depth following the continued positive surface sample results from the project.
“Based on the sheer size, scale and grade of this deposit, Halleck Creek has the potential to be one of the largest rare earths projects in the US. Since acquiring this asset we have significantly increased the footprint and continue to see high grade mineralization over a large area.
“We’re now looking forward to the assay results, expected in late June or July, and based on the preliminary data we’re already planning our next phase of work.”
The completion of the maiden drilling campaign follows 118 surface sample results returned late last month which prompted ARR to stake claims across an additional 1,191ha. That brings the Halleck Creek Rare Earth Project to 2,449ha. Adding in the company’s La Paz project in Arizona, which is in a leading place to become one of North America’s largest rare earths projects, ARR’s total area under exploration across the US is now 5,260ha.
A bonus for the company is that surface samples returned last month, similar to those collected from Halleck Creek in 2018 and 2021, demonstrate very low penalty elements thorium and uranium, which are often found with REEs at other locations.
What happens now?
American Rare Earths is currently planning additional detailed geological mapping and geochemical sampling over Halleck Creek claims, with the work scheduled to start this month. The focus will be on the Red Mountain portion of the Red Mountain Pluton’s rock outcrops, plus the three newly staked tenement areas.
Aggregate results will be used to plan future drilling as the company works towards a Maiden Resource.
Right place, right time
As well as advancing its projects, American Rare Earths is collaborating with top-tier US Government backed R&D projects. These aim to build a secure and environmentally sustainable rare earths supply chain so the US can reduce its reliance on China for these critical minerals which are essential for the clean energy transition, advanced communications and national defence.
This article was developed in collaboration with American Rare Earths, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.