Ionic Rare Earths Limited (ASX:IXR) Makuutu Exploration Target Upgraded 40%


Makuutu Exploration Target Upgraded 40%

Melbourne, Feb 27, 2024 AEST (ABN Newswire) – Ionic Rare Earths Limited (googlechartASX:IXR) (googlechartIXRRF:OTCMKTS) is pleased to advise a revision and increase to the Exploration Target for the Makuutu Heavy Rare Earths Project “Makuutu” or “the Project”) in Uganda.

– Successful maiden Rotary Air Blast (RAB) drilling on Exploration Licence (EL) 00257 resulted in approx. 40% increase to updated Exploration Target at Makuutu;

– Of the 76 RAB drill holes completed in Phase 5 across EL 00147, EL00257, and Retention Licence (RL) 00007, 69 holes reported assays with clay-hosted rare earth intersections above the current resource cut-off;

– Drilling across EL00147 has increased confidence in the existing Exploration Target defined for Exploration Licence 00147 with no further change; and

– Makuutu remains the most advanced Ionic adsorption clay project in development today with product not committed to China, and available to supply new supply chains looking to decouple sourcing from existing sources.

The Company is progressing the development at the Makuutu Heavy Rare Earths Project through local Ugandan operating entity Rwenzori Rare Metals Limited (“RRM”). IonicRE has agreed terms with partners in RRM on moving to 94% ownership which is expected to occur in H1 2024.

The updated overall Makuutu Exploration Target has therefore been revised upward to:

285 – 766 million tonnes grading 400 – 700 ppm TREO*

*This Exploration Target is conceptual in nature but is based on reasonable grounds and assumptions. There has been insufficient exploration to estimate a Mineral Resource and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in the estimation of a Mineral Resource.

The Exploration Target has been increased from the 2022 target based on the Phase 5 RAB drilling completed on exploration licence EL00147 and EL00257 during 2023. Results for these programs have been previously reported.

Drilling in 2023 on EL0147 was designed to infill the initial 1-kilometre spaced 2021 RAB program drilling to an approximate spacing of 500 metres. This drilling returned results consistent with the 2021 RAB drilling and the exploration target ranges have been maintained for targets A6, B4 and B5 listed in Table 1* and shown in Figure 1*.

The maiden RAB drilling program in 2023 on EL00257 was broad spaced with the aim of identifying the presence and tenor of rare earth mineralisation in the regolith above underlying fresh rock in laterite plateau areas. Following assessment of the material type and multi-element analytical data, an exploration target has been estimated and included in the overall Makuutu Project Exploration Target. Exploration targets B6 to B13 listed in Table 1* and shown in Figure 1* have been derived from this drilling.

The revised Exploration Target is separated into target areas within the sedimentary basin, and those outside the basin in a mixture of weathered rock types including granite, granodiorite and some mafic rocks.

The updated exploration target is detailed in Table 1*.

Additionally, the Exploration Target has been broken down by tenement in showing the new exploration target derived for EL00257.

The Exploration Target is outside the current project Mineral Resource Estimate detailed in Table 3*.

An exploration program designed to evaluate these targets for resource development, including drilling and processing test work, will be compiled during 2024 to inform the Company on work streams to advance exploration licences toward further evaluation.

*To view tables and figures, please visit:

About Ionic Rare Earths Limited

Ionic Rare Earths ASX:IXRIonic Rare Earths Limited (ASX:IXR) (OTCMKTS:IXRRF) is focused on developing its flagship Makuutu Rare Earths Project in Uganda into a significant long life, low-cost, supplier of high-value critical and heavy rare earths.

Makuutu is an advanced-stage, ionic adsorption clay-hosted project highlighted by near-surface mineralisation, significant exploration upside, excellent metallurgical characteristics and access to tier-one infrastructure.

The ionic adsorption clay-hosted geology at Makuutu is similar to major rare earths projects in Southern China, which are responsible for the majority of global supply of low cost heavy and critical rare earths, specifically the high value magnet metals (Dysprosium and Terbium) Heavy Rare Earths (>98% originating from ionic clays). Metallurgical testing at Makuutu has returned excellent recovery rates, which provide multiple avenues for a simple process route.

Makuutu is well-supported by tier-one existing infrastructure which includes access to major highways, roads, power, water and a professional workforce.

Rare Earths will play a critical role in the future of clean energy. Rare Earths are a key ingredient in the permanent magnets found in wind turbines and electric vehicles.

IonicRE is led by an experienced and proven team, who have the capabilities to deliver Makuutu into production and realise value for all stakeholders. 

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