NioCorp Files NI 43-101 Updated Elk Creek Niobium Resource Report
November 6, 2014 (Source: Marketwired) — NioCorp Developments Ltd. (“NioCorp” or the “Company“) (TSX VENTURE:NB) (OTCQX:NIOBF) (FRANKFURT:BR3) is pleased to announce the filing of an updated NI43-101 resource report for the Elk Creek niobium deposit.
Commencing in May, the Company initiated a three phase technical infill drilling program, with multiple goals of enhancing the classification of the resource; producing geotechnical and geochemical analysis of the deposit; provide material for the use in metallurgical studies including pilot plant; and to provide all other necessary information required to create and design a mine plan. Additional drilling to enhance the overall size of the deposit, where it remains open to the northwest, southeast, and at depth, will be carried out in the future.
The Company has completed two phases of the drilling operations at Elk Creek, with the phase 3, four-hole drill program now currently underway. Utilizing historic and phase 1 drilling results, (NI43-101 resource estimate does not include phase 2 drilling results), SRK Consulting (“SRK”) of Lakewood, Colorado and Cardiff, UK have completed an updated Mineral Resource estimate.
SRK’s Mineral Resource is based on a robust 3D model of grade trends within the carbonatite complex and is based on good QAQC results. Higher grades are associated with pyrochlore contained in magnetite bearing dolomitic carbonatite. The Indicated Mineral Resource is confined to a single coherent well drilled area containing continuous high grade features.
The estimate has been reported according to CIM Standards..
The Mineral Resource estimate for the Elk Creek deposit is summarized in Table 1 below:
|Table 1 – SRK Mineral Resource Statement Effective Date 9th September 2014|
|Grade (Nb2O5%)||Contained Nb2O5
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(1) Mineral Resources are not Mineral Reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. All figures are rounded to reflect the relative accuracy of the estimate and have been used to derive sub-totals, totals and weighted averages. Such calculations inherently involve a degree of rounding and consequently introduce a margin of error. Where these occur, SRK does not consider them to be material. All composites have been capped where appropriate. The Concession is wholly owned by and exploration is operated by Niocorp Developments Ltd
(2) The reporting standard adopted for the reporting of the MRE uses the terminology, definitions and guidelines given in the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) Standards on Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves (December 2005) as required by NI 43-101.
(3) SRK assumes the Elk Creek deposit to be amenable to a variety of Underground Mining methods. In the absence of definitive pricing for Nb and established rates of metallurgical recovery, SRK has reported the Mineral Resource at a cut-off of 0.3% Nb2O5. The Company’s previous Mineral Resource dated April 2012 was calculated at a cut-off of 0.4% Nb2O5.
(4) SRK Completed a site inspection to the deposit by Mr Martin Pittuck, MSc., C.Eng, MIMMM, an appropriate “independent qualified person” as this term is defined in National Instrument 43-101.
Given the current early stage in the other technical disciplines and on-going metallurgical testwork the sensitivity in the Mineral Resource at a range of preliminary cut-off grades is presented in Table 2 from 0.3% Nb2O5 to 0.5% Nb2O5.
|Table 2 – SRK Mineral Resource Sensitivity|
|Grade (Nb2O5%)||Contained Nb2O5
“We are extremely pleased with the rapid advancement of drilling operations and progress we have made at the Elk Creek site, and we are a very pleased to be able to deliver this resource update to shareholders, forming another milestone for the Company” stated Mark A. Smith, CEO of NioCorp. “We are continuing with our current drilling operations with the aim of further enhancing our Indicated to Inferred Mineral Resource ratio. Together with significant progress being achieved on the metallurgy program, including pilot plant work and a further resource update on the completion of current drilling operations, the significant advancement of technical knowledge on this project will dovetail into the extensive engineering design work that SRK are diligently completing, in order to fully meet our overall objectives for this world-class project.”
The Company has filed the complete NI43-101 compliant report on SEDAR and it will be available shortly on the Company’s website.
Martin Pittuck, MSc., C.Eng, MIMMM of SRK Consulting (UK) Ltd., a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101, is responsible for the Elk Creek resource estimation and has read and approved the technical information contained in this news release.
About the Company: NioCorp are developing the only primary niobium deposit known to be under development in the U.S., and the highest grade undeveloped niobium deposit in North America, located near Elk Creek, Nebraska. The Company has filed an NI43-101 compliant resource report, available on SEDAR, reporting an Indicated resource of 28.2 Million Tonnes grading 0.63% Nb2O5, containing 177 Million Kgs of Nb2O5, and an Inferred resource of 132.8 Million Tonnes grading 0.55% Nb2O5, containing 733.7 Million Kgs of Nb2O5, (at a 0.3% Nb2O5 cutoff grade). Niobium is mainly used in the form of Ferro-Niobium to produce HSLA (High Strength, Low Alloy) steel, to produce lighter, stronger steel for use in automotive, structural and pipeline industries. The U.S. imports 100% of its niobium needs.
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD
Peter Dickie, Director, President and Corporate Secretary
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
Certain statements contained in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are based upon NioCorp’s reasonable expectations and business plan at the date hereof, which are subject to change depending on economic, political and competitive circumstances and contingencies. Readers are cautioned that such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause a change in such assumptions and the actual outcomes and estimates to be materially different from those estimated or anticipated future results, achievements or position expressed or implied by those forward-looking statements. Risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause NioCorp’s plans or prospects to change include changes in demand for and price of commodities (such as fuel and electricity) and currencies; changes or disruptions in the securities markets; legislative, political or economic developments; the need to obtain permits and comply with laws and regulations and other regulatory requirements; the possibility that actual results of work may differ from projections/expectations or may not realize the perceived potential of NioCorp’s projects; risks of accidents, equipment breakdowns and labour disputes or other unanticipated difficulties or interruptions; the possibility of cost overruns or unanticipated expenses in development programs; operating or technical difficulties in connection with exploration, mining or development activities; the speculative nature of mineral exploration and development, including the risks of diminishing quantities of grades of reserves and resources; and the risks involved in the exploration, development and mining business. NioCorp disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
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