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potash buy up and read why

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    The granting of consent allowed for the comprehensive drill assessment of the Lake Disappointment potash resource. Global Groundwater Pty Ltd were contracted to conduct the hydrogeological assessment of the Lake using a ‘Geoprobe rig’ in conjunction with trenching and pump testing, to enable a JORC standard resource estimate to be generated.

    A total of 30 holes were drilled using a purpose built ‘Geoprobe’ rig, transported over the Lake by helicopter. The core retrieved from the lake was collected in sealed tubes that recover the Lake sediments as well as the entrained brine for the interval.

    Drilling was carried out on a nominal 5km x 5km grid (accommodating the Traditional Owners restricted areas), being the drill spacing required for a JORC compliant resource based on a variography study carried out by RSG Global.

    The drilling has determined that the lakebed sediments are at least 3 metres and up to 10 metres in thickness, averaging 4.1 metres. Heavy brine flow was encountered in every hole. A drill hole location plan is appended.

    In addition to the drilling, a test-pumping programme was carried out by Global Groundwater Pty Ltd. Pumping was done at three separate trench sites to define the brine flow characteristics of the lakebed sediments.

    The results of the drilling and pumping testwork were used to compile an independent, JORC compliant, Indicated Resource estimate for the Lake Disappointment potash deposit.

    Resource Estimation
    The resource estimates for total contained Sulphate of Potash (SOP) are as follows:

    Lower estimate
    7,705 Mt @ 3.17kg/t for 24.43 Mt K2SO4

    Upper estimate
    8,635 Mt @ 3.17kg/t for 27.37 Mt K2SO4

    The difference between the upper and lower figure relates to depth and area assumptions for the lake margins.

    The average potassium sulphate (SOP) content per tonne of lakebed sediment is derived from the analysis of the whole drill core. The average of 3.17kg/t translates to 6.17kgSOP/m3 of lakebed material. Higher grade areas of the lake reported 10.40 kgSOP/m3.

    In practice the recovery of SOP will be via the (solar) evaporation of the entrained brines. Brine samples drawn from drill holes have returned SOP values as high as 20.01g/L. Of significance is the average (arithmetic mean) SOP value of 12.56g/L for all brine samples collected. Vigorous brine flow was encountered in all of the holes drilled. Brine flow parameters are currently being determined.

    SOP is used extensively as a potash source in fertilizers. Imports of potash to Australia currently exceed $200 million per annum at the retail level. The current base price (June delivery) for SOP is $632/tonne, giving the in situ resource a value ca $15 billion for Lake Disappointment. There are no potash producers in Australia and thus imports currently account for 100% of the nations potash requirements.

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