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  • Montero, Mintek Collaborate To Optimize Hydrometallurgical Testing

    Montero Mining and Exploration Ltd. (CVE:MON) said Thursday that it has come to an agreement to collaborate with Mintek to further develop and optimize the Montero Stage 1 leaching process.

    Johannesburg, South Africa-based Mintek is an internationally recognized metallurgical research and testwork facility.

    Montero said the efforts will yield an improvement in the economics of the Montero process as well as assisting Mintek's program of developing its proprietary technology for the refining and separation of rare earth elements.

    "By collaborating on Mintek's program of developing new and innovative process routes for separating Rare Earth Elements, Montero expects to increase its options to ultimately adopt the refining strategy that extracts maximum value from its REE project," Montero president and CEO Dr. Tony Harwood said.

    Mintek will continue Montero's bulk leach test program at a pilot plant scale to verify and optimize the leaching process already developed by Mintek and Montero for the Wigu Hill Rare Earth Element (NYSEMKT:REE) project.

    In return, Montero will provide Mintek with a bulk sample from the Wigu Hill Deposit to be used by Mintek as part of Mintek's program to develop its independent, proprietary refining technology for producing individually-separated REE products.

    Effectively Mintek will be conducting two parallel testwork programs - the first specific to the Wigu Hill Deposit and using conventional, non-proprietary refining technology and the second being Mintek's proprietary process in the early stages of development.

    "With Mintek's proven track record of success in the development of new technologies for the refining of metals, we expect that this development will allow Montero to continue on our strategy to become a low cost Rare Earth producer," Montero's Harwood added.

    Mintek will compare the two technologies as part of the program and, if Mintek's proprietary technology offers benefits to Montero, the parties will investigate ways in which Montero might access the Mintek technology.

    Through this collaboration, Montero said it expects to get early insight into alternative, innovative refining technologies.

    Montero's Wigu Hill project is a light rare earth element deposit and a large carbonite complex with bastnaesite mineralization located in Tanzania. It covers a 142 square kilometre area and grab samples have yielded results as high as 27.57% total rare earth oxides.

    The asset is considered a "look-a-like" to Molycorp's (NYSE:MCP) Mountain Pass project in the U.S. as the REEs at the deposit are hosted in the mineral bastnaesite, found in carbonatite dikes.

    REEs are critical in the development of emerging green technologies and high-tech applications, from electric and hybrid vehicles and wind and hydro power turbines, to LCD screens, MRI and X-ray machines, mobile devices and other computing equipment.

    Montero also has uranium assets in Tanzania and Quebec, and phosphate assets in South Africa.

    Oct 11 3:13 PM | Link | Comment!
  • Bayfield Ventures Reports Highest Grade Gold So Far From East Burns Block

    Bayfield Ventures Corp. (CVE:BYV) unveiled today the highest grade gold results so far from the continued exploration on the east side of its Burns Block property in northwestern Ontario.

    The gold-silver project is located in the Rainy River District, just to the east and on strike to Rainy River Resources' (TSE:RR) multi-million ounce deposit.

    The company said Thursday that the East Burns Block step out hole RR12-30 intersected a "strong interval of gold and silver mineralization", in a position roughly 20 metres down dip from a previously reported hole.

    The newest hole hit 19.6 metres grading 5.45 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 20.63 g/t silver, including 11.8 metres of 8.57 g/t gold and 30.87 g/t silver.

    Bayfield said the hole marks the highest grade gold mineralization found at the East Burns area so far, and further extends the eastern zone down plunge from previous drilling.

    This Eastern higher grade zone remains open down dip to the southwest, the miner said, with Bayfield drilling this zone at depth.

    The junior company has been active in drilling the east area of the Burns Block property this past summer, on both side of the Bayfield-Rainy River Resources property line.

    Bayfield said mineralization is being found withing a 50 to 70 metre wide zone of shearing, alteration and polymetallic base metal sulfide mineralization.

    The company said it is fully funded, with roughly $3.5 million in the bank, to finish its planned 100,000 metre diamond drill program, with drilling focused on Burns Block.

    Last week, it released results on both the western and eastern portions of the property, which caused its stock to rise.

    Results were reported from four infill holes from the East Burns zone, and many holes in the northwest area of the asset.

    The holes drilled in the northwest area were done around the near-surface, high grade discovery hole RR11-71, which returned 26.7 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 170.69 g/t silver over 25.5 metres.

    Notable holes from this zone were hole RR12-26, which intersected 5.5 metres of 10.39 g/t gold and 191.32 g/t silver, just 30 metres north of the discovery hole. The company said the hole is roughly 10 metres up dip to the "bonanza zone" in hole RR11-71.

    Oct 11 2:58 PM | Link | Comment!
  • TNR Gold Gears Up For Upcoming Los Azules Trial, Boasts Success At Alaska Shotgun Gold Project

    TNR Gold Corp. (CVE:TNR) has a major quarter ahead of it with the continued exploration of its Shotgun gold property in Alaska and as it prepares for a trial fighting for the ownership rights to a portion of the Los Azules copper project in Argentina.

    TNR Gold and its subsidiary, Solitario Argentina S.A., are contesting the ownership to the northern half of the Los Azules copper deposit and are seeking to have the court recognize a right on the part of Solitario to back into the project.

    The Los Azules deposit is currently owned by subsidiaries ofMcEwen Mining Inc. (TSE:MUX) (NYSE:MUX), which has described the project as one of the largest undeveloped copper deposits in the world.

    Prolific mining investor Rob McEwen is the president and major shareholder of McEwen Mining, which was created back in January of this year from the combination of Minera Andes and U.S. Gold.

    In a recent news release, McEwen Mining announced a considerable increase in the Los Azules copper project resource from the one previously prepared in June 2010.

    The trial claiming title to a substantial portion of the deposit begins on November 19 in Vancouver, British Columbia.

    Given the magnitude of the claim, the resolution of the lawsuit is "highly significant" to the company, says TNR Gold's president Gary Schellenberg.

    But TNR Gold's prime focus is on its Shotgun property in Alaska, from where it just last month released "the best drill results ever obtained from the property", TNR's president says.

    Here, TNR has a 100 per cent ownership, with no disputes involved, and is looking for a large, bulk-tonnage gold deposit, similar to what is being developed at the Donlin gold project by NovaGold (TSE:NG) (AMEX:NG) and Barrick Gold (TSE:ABX) (NYSE: ABX), Schellenberg reckons.

    The property holds an historic (pre NI 43-101) resource of about 1 million ounces so far, and Schellenberg says that a significant result of this year's program was that it opened the door for discovering a "much larger" deposit.

    In a follow-up to the announced 2012 drill program results from hole SR12-56, which returned 242 metres averaging 1.25 grams per tonne (g/t) gold, the company last month unveiled further results from the second hole, returning 209 metres averaging 1.02 g/t gold across the full length of the targeted porphyry system.

    The mineral explorer said the results confirmed its model of mineralization, where "elevated gold values occur in very broad zones with higher grades in repeating structural features through the Shotgun Ridge area."

    Mineralization found also matched interpreted geophysical anomalies, which will help the company to target further drilling.

    "Geophysical results at Shotgun Ridge suggest that features hosting mineralized zones may be structurally replicated several times, indicating significant potential for discovering new mineralized zones.

    "There are several other similar geophysical and geochemical signatures on different parts of the property, and we have identified potential offsets of the mineralized zone for drilling next season."

    TNR has completed drilling at the property for this season, with every intention to go back in early April or May of next year.

    "It was a short season for us. We have proven our updated exploration model and that the property has upside through the geophysics we have done," Schellenberg adds.

    "There is now indication that we are seeing expansion of the mineralization laterally and to depth, and we are looking at what additional information we will need to complete a 43-101 compliant resource estimate - expected at the latest at the end of next season."

    Just yesterday, the junior gold company released the results from the third and final hole of its drilling program this year. Hole SR12-58 returned 83 metres averaging 0.82 g/t gold across the full length of the southwest zone within the Shotgun Ridge system, with the company saying it confirmed down dip mineralization.

    The infrastructure at the property is remote, he admits, but no more so than for Donlin - one of the largest undeveloped gold deposits in the world. The Shotgun property is just 175 kilometres south of Donlin within the Kuskokwim Gold Belt in southwestern Alaska.

    "We are looking for gold deposits in the multi million ounce range here. We now understand from this year's success that there is greater potential than previously anticipated."

    Indeed, the Shotgun property has multiple adjacent prospects, "which could be as good as Shotgun Ridge," Schellenberg says, where the company will be looking for additional ounces. "Shotgun Ridge was the first zone found, but just because it was exposed on the ridge does not mean it will be the largest or the most important zone."

    The company also boasts newly appointed Greg Johnson on its board of directors, who was co-founder and executive of NovaGold Resources, and held senior exploration roles for Placer Dome - now known as Barrick Gold - including a key role in the discovery of the 40 million ounce Donlin gold deposit.

    TNR Gold, which purchased the remaining 50 per cent interest in Shotgun from NovaGold in 2010, has around $1.2 million of cash under its belt, and is looking into various ways of funding next year's exploration program, including a potential joint venture.

    These plans are secondary, however, to the resolution of the disputed ownership of Los Azules, which the company hopes will be sometime early next year.

    In addition to Shotgun and Los Azules, TNR Gold also has exposure to the iron ore market with its Soules Bay project nearly 300 kilometres north of Thunder Bay, Ontario.

    The property contains a 12 km strike length, "highly magnetic" iron formation, the junior explorer claims, and lies next to a historical resource of 628 million tonnes grading 23.1% soluble iron.

    The vast majority of the formation within the property has not yet been tested, but an extensive exploration program is planned once the provincial government of Ontario confirms ownership claims.

    TNR Gold's stock has risen more than 83 per cent in the last month, and is currently sitting at around 11 cents.

    Oct 11 2:49 PM | Link | Comment!
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