- October 21, 2020
- Posted in LOCAL
MIRRORPLEX (Pvt) Limited’s lithium project in Shamva has started drilling with the initial 23-hole program comprising 2,000 metres of reverse circulation (RC), with an RC rig now on site.
Rudairo Dickson Mapuranga
The project which is postured to become Zimbabwe’s biggest hard rock lithium resources has the potential to grow into a world-class lithium mine with Results from 240 Rock Chip samples taken from the exposed Bonnyvale pegmatite body at the Shamva Lithium Project provides high-grade lithium assay results up to 3.13% Li2O and surface sampling at the Loch Ness prospect has revealed two more pegmatites containing high Li2O grades up to 4.82% Li2O.
Speculatively sitting on over 6 million tonnes of lithium highest grade ore, Mirrorplex is working on Stage two drilling which consists of reverse circulation aimed at confirming mineralisation beneath Lochness North, South Bonny Vale and Hereford East and West as well as testing for extensions of mineralisation.
The mine reportedly boasts of greater lithium grades than Zimbabwe and Africa’s largest lithium producer, Bikita minerals and Prospect Resources’s Arcadia lithium project whose grades are below 3.0% Li2O.
According to Mirrorplex Director Mr Nyasha Chidoh, the Lithium mineralisation at the Shamva project defined over ~160m thickness and ~550m strike at the surface in the Bonnyvale Pegmatite.
Mapped pegmatite outcrops show a cumulative strike length up to 3km (five mapped bodies) and widths ranging up to 250m, with samples from all bodies sampled to date showing a high proportion of assays reporting between 1% and 5% Li2O.
The Loch Ness Prospect lies in the north-western area of the Shamva tenement package and contains two elongated dyke areas exposed over a cumulative 500m strike within the licences with numerous samples returning well over 2% Li2O to a maximum of 4.71% and 4.82% Li2O demonstrating the high-grade potential of the area.
Chidoh said the commencement of the second phase drilling of the project began in June his year with results from this phase expected early next year defining the geometry and confirm previous soil and rock chips sampling from the high-grade intersections.
“It was only in June 2020 that the company made a decision to start drilling and I am particularly excited to say that since that time we have conducted extensive geological mapping with immediate drill targets and considerable blue sky,”
“Now the best part, the drilling, commences for the second time and we are confident, based on the previous drilling that we will be delivering some excellent assay results from Early December as the program unfolds.”
“Work is progressing well on a litho-structural interpretation along with a compilation of geochemical data for Mirrorplex regional tenement package. This lead-up work will be crucial in targeting the highly prospective Spodumene and Petalite lithium targets,” Chidoh said.
Drilling Samples for the project were assayed via a multi-element (29 elements) Sodium Peroxide Fusion method (ICP90A) for a total digestion resulting in a “complete” analysis at SGS Laboratories Rock Samples sent to ALS Labs in South Africa and undergo preparation (Prep-31) which involves weighing, fine crushing to 70% at -2mm, with a 250g split which is further pulverised to better than 85% at 75microns.
SI6’s Botswana-based Exploration Manager was onsite for the entire drill program and supervised all hole location, logging, sampling and sample dispatch exercises Data collected in Li-ppm were converted by a factor of 2.153/10000 to calculate a % Li2O figure.
The Project located in the BinduraShamva Greenstone Belt located in the Central Archaean Zimbabwean Craton. Locally, the area is dominated by complex folds of pillowed basalts, ultramafic schists, and serpentinites of the Arcturus formation. Banded iron formation (BIF’s) occurs between 30- 100m thick associated with these bands of siltstone and shale all intercalated with the basalt.
Numerous pegmatitic dykes have been mapped and/or reported throughout the area generally striking N-S or NNW-SSE over various strike length (up to 2000m) and strike widths up to 250m. Reports suggest that numerous parallel dykes adjacent to the main pegmatite are apparent, but are partially obscured on the ground. The dykes show variation in mineralogy between occurrences and along strike suggesting fractionation trends may be apparent.
This article first appeared in the Mining Zimbabwe October 2020 issue of Mining Zimbabwe magazine