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Proactive Investors - Ancuabe New Pospects

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    Triton Minerals defines new graphite prospects at Ancuabe
    Wednesday, February 04, 2015 by Proactive Investors


    Triton Minerals (ASX:TON) has defined new prospect areas at its Ancuabe project in Mozambique that has potential synergies with its world class Nicanda Hill graphite and vanadium.
    Ancuabe is located approximately 150 kilometres east of Nicanda Hill, which has been confirmed as the world’s largest known combined graphite-vanadium deposit.

    Reconnaissance mapping and sampling on one priority prospect area has confirmed the presence of visible jumbo flake graphite.

    Substantial graphitic mineralisation outcropping were located in a number of locations over a distance of up to 3.5 kilometres in License 5336.

    A 100 kilogram bulk sample has been sent to Mintek in Johannesburg for flake size characterisation and recovery test work. Results are expected to be received by late March 2015.

    At Nicanda Hill, a 12 tonne bulk sample has been collected for pilot plant level studies. This has grade control assays averaging 17.2% total graphitic carbon.

    “These latest results are another positive step forward for Triton in our goal of producing a large quantity of high grade graphite concentrates, in a wide range of flake sizes,” managing director Brad Boyle said.

    “The average grade of the initial rock chips samples obtained from Ancuabe is 17.6% TGC, with a maximum grade returned of 22.3%TGC. These assay results, together with the extremely large flakes in excess of 2,000 μm/5 to 10 mesh observed in hand specimens, are very encouraging.

    “Our focus for 2015 remains on the continued rapid development of the Nicanda Hill resource, however our exploration efforts this year will include the potential definition of a world-class jumbo-flake graphite resource at Ancuabe, which will complement the key proposed Nicanda Hill operation.”

    Ancuabe exploration prospects


    A program comprising over 1,800 line kilometres of the airborne geophysical (VTEM) survey was completed over the Ancuabe project licenses late in 2014.

    Whilst the majority of the survey data is still being processed and finalised, the company has already identified three new large and significant conductive responses (typical of high grade graphite mineralisation) within License 5336 of the project area.

    This is addition to the original graphitic outcrops identified by the Company on License 5380 in 2013.

    Prospect area 1 is particularly significant as it appears to form a potential satellite mineralised body along strike north east from the historic Ancuabe graphite mine, which is currently held by Graphite Kropfmuehl (GK), the operational graphite division of AMG Mining.

    Further, this location is important given its close proximity to the small functioning graphite processing plant at the Ancuabe graphite mine site.

    These prospects, which are supported by positive rock chip sampling results, offer Triton the opportunity to test for additional near-surface high-grade, high purity and very large flake graphite with similar liberation characteristics to those found in the resource material located at the Nicanda Hill deposit.

    Triton is aiming to further test these new anomalies at Ancuabe in future exploration and drilling programs later this year.

    Very large flake graphite sourced from Ancuabe may provide Triton the ability to produce a broad flake size range of high quality graphite concentrates in order to cater for a variety of end-user requirements.

    Assays from rock chip samples taken from the Area 1 averaged 17.6%TGC and a maximum content of 22.3%TGC.

    Visual inspections of the rock samples taken from License 5336, also appear to contain a higher volume of large, jumbo and super-jumbo graphite flake, that appears to readily separate on the outer surface of the rock chip samples.

    Triton believes that, based on both visual inspections and assays of the rock chip samples obtained from License 5336, that there is a stronger presence of graphitic mineralisation in these samples, when compared to the samples recovered from License 5380.

    Based on the company’s research on the previous Ancuabe mining operations, it appears that traditional flotation methods are required to separate the graphite flakes from the graphitic ore.

    Although, additional grinding may be required in order to separate the graphite flakes from the waste material, Triton does not expect this to have a detrimental impact on the quality of the graphite concentrate and the range of flake sizes that can be recovered from the ore.

    Nicanda Hill bulk sample

    Approximately 12 tonnes of near-surface graphitic material were excavated and stockpiled in preparation for shipment to Mintek for the planned pilot plant metallurgical test work program.

    Individual samples of about 1.2 tonnes each were collected from 10 separate sites across a 2 kilometre range of the Nicanda Hill resource.

    The average control sample grade of 17.2%TGC exceeds the overall resource graphite grade of 10.7%TGC, indicating the graphite grades may potentially exceed the average resource grade in the Nicanda Hill deposit by a substantial amount and could be achievable under actual mining conditions.

    This has the potential to improve the overall economics of extracting and producing graphite concentrates at Nicanda Hill.

    Integrated development concept plan


    Triton is reviewing a number of development options in which the Ancuabe project may be incorporated into the Nicanda Hill operations, in order to provide a greater commercial flexibility by providing a varied range of high-purity graphite flake sizes for end users.

    It is investigating whether the Ancuabe project could be developed as either a stand-alone operation in close proximity to Pemba port facilities or transporting the graphitic material for treatment to the proposed Nicanda Hill operation.

    An option being reviewed is the creation of a Central Processing Plant at Nicanda Hill, under which the Nicanda Hill material could be supplemented with graphite ore from both Ancuabe and, in the longer term, Balama South.

    Ancuabe is located approximately 150 kilometres east of Nicanda Hill and under the integrated development concept plan, Triton is reviewing the commercial economics associated with the use of back-loading trucks on return from the Port of Pemba to Nicanda Hill, with the Ancuabe large/jumbo flake graphitic ore.

    The potential of the Ancuabe super jumbo flake operation is considered by the company to be complimentary to the Nicanda Hill operation.

    An integrated Nicanda Hill-Ancuabe development plan offers Triton the option to provide a supplemental range of graphite flake sizes.

    A more detailed study and analysis about the viability of the CPP will be completed and considered during the Nicanda Hill Definitive Feasibility Study, which will commence shortly.

    Should Triton be able to integrate the Ancuabe and Nicanda Hill projects, this would place the company in a unique position with respect to the size of its resources and mine life, with low production costs, and the ability to provide the full range of graphite flake sizes.

    Further, the Ancuabe project could position Triton to take advantage of the expected future increase in demand for jumbo and large flake graphite and the associated premium prices for those graphite flake categories, as highlighted in Stormcrow’s Graphite Sector Initiation report from 2014.


    Triton Minerals remains focused on the Nicanda Hill, but the identification of new prospects with visible jumbo flake graphite at the Ancuabe Project is a positive step forward.

    Demonstrating economic volumes of large and jumbo flake graphite at Ancuabe will provide potential to complement the proposed Nicanda Hill operation.

    This will in turn allow the company to provide a greater selection of high quality graphite concentrates to cater for a wider range of customer requirements.

    Triton has already attracted A$20 million in project financing from the Hong Kong based Long State Investments to continue the rapid development of the Nicanda Hill graphite and vanadium deposit.

    Nicanda Hill contains the world’s largest known graphite and vanadium resource. It hosts multiple high grade graphite zones and contains good quality medium and coarse flake graphite.

    Recently Triton delivered some impressive metallurgical results from Nicanda Hill, with upgrades of up to 99.9%C achieved in laboratory test work.

    Not to be forgotten are the vanadium concentrate with grades up to 0.74% V2O5, and a zinc concentrate assaying 7% produced from the graphite tail through simple flotation process.

    Significant price catalysts are ahead for Triton including:

    - Further results from reconnaissance mapping at Ancuabe;
    - Advancing discussions with potential offtake partners for Nicanda Hill;
    - Completing the Nicanda Hill Environmental Study; and
    - Completing the Nicanda Hill Definitive Feasibility Study by the end of 2015.

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