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ECR Minerals #ECR – Potential for Rare Earth Minerals at the Lolworth Range Project, Queensland

ECR Minerals plc (LON: ECR), the exploration and development company focused on gold in Australia, is pleased to announce that investigations into the previous 2022 field season stream geochemistry results of the Lolworth Project, Queensland are showing potential for the presence of rare earth elements within the project area.

ECR Minerals plc has 100% ownership of three exploration tenements (EPM27901, EPM27902 and EPM27903), which covers the Lolworth Range, located 120km west of the famous gold district of Charters Towers. The project is being explored under ECR’s Australian wholly owned subsidiary Lux Exploration Pty Ltd (“LUX”).


  • A selected number of pan concentrate stream sediment samples from the 2022 field season are highly anomalous for Rare Earth Elements (REE), including Cesium (Ce), Lanthalum (La) and Yttrium (Y).
  • The top ten values include anomaly readings such as (Ce greater than 6000 ppm (0.6%), (La greater than 2760 ppm) and (Y greater than 530 ppm)
  • The top anomalous values of Ce, La and Y spatially correlate to a north east trend across the project with some of the best values coinciding with previously mapped intrusive centres.
  • The Lolworth Project is showing a diverse range of exploration targets for Gold, Niobium-Tantalum and REE.
  • Field work following up these targets is well underway.

CEO Andrew Haythorpe commented: “ECR’s Lolworth project is continuing to exceed our early expectations, and along with Gold, Niobium and Tantalum, the presence of key Rare Earth Elements adds yet another dimension to the scope and diversity of mineralisation in this region.”

“The mounting anecdotal evidence and volume of positive results continues to support the Board’s view that Lolworth could be host to significant Gold, Niobium, Tantalum and REE discoveries. I look forward to reporting the sample results from the latest fieldwork back to the markets as soon as possible”

(Figure 1) Map of the Lolworth Project showing the distribution of Ce, Y and La from pan concentrate sampling to date (May 2023) can be found here:

Figure 1: https://www.ecrminerals.com/images/2023/Fig1_REE_Potential_230524.png


REE’s (Rare Earth Elements) are a group of 17 elements from the periodic table. While they are abundant within the Earth’s crust, discoveries of sufficient concentration of REE’s s to constitute an economically viable deposit are rare, with few currently mined sources in the western world. The most abundant REEs include Cerium (Ce), Neodymium (Nd) and Lanthanum (La). REEs, and these are becoming increasingly sought after as a result of their increased use in ‘green’ related technologies such as batteries, magnets in electrical motors, catalytic convertors and aircraft alloys.


All pan concentrate stream sampling to date at Lolworth has been analysed using a four-acid digest that is aggressive in digesting most elements. A total of 33 elements including Gold have been analysed since sampling began in mid-2022, and to date ECR has detected Gold, Niobium and Tantalum from within the streams draining the Lolworth Range. Exceptional concentrations of Niobium and Tantalum have been recorded in streams draining a 10km long ridgeline just north of Gorge Creek. Previous announcements regarding these results can be found in ECR’s RNS from February 1 2023 here, and RNS from April 3 2023 here

Although the Company has not specifically analysed all stream samples for REEs, Cesium (Ce), Lanthalum (La) and Yttrium (Y) have been included as part of the 33 elements analysed. Results to date show high values of Ce, La and Y, all of which have been tabulated in Table One below. In summary, ten samples are greater than 0.6% in (Ce), over ten samples are greater than 2760 ppm in (La) and over ten samples are greater than 530 ppm in (Y).


It is important to note that a number of the high Ce, La and Y results spatially correlate and group together well (see Figure One above). The highest concentrations of these REEs trend in a north-east pattern across the project area, and while the reason for this geochemical trend has yet to be determined, it is hoped that the on-site geological mapping and sampling currently underway in the area will be able to provide some answers. Niobium and Tantalum (Nb-Ta) anomalies highlighted in previous announcements also correlate to some of the best REE results within the same region.

Although the Geological Survey of Queensland previously identified two intrusive areas of interest within the tenements (see Figure One above), the Lolworth Project area has not yet been mapped in detail. While the boundaries of these intrusives and their mineralogy has yet to be established, the Board is greatly encouraged by the fact that the highest concentrations of Niobium and Tantalum (including some of the REEs) are associated with these mapped intrusives. In particular a large intrusive identified by historic aerial mapping located in the extreme south-east of tenement EPM 27903 has been prioritised for exploration by the Board, and a number of sampling campaigns have been planned within this area to identify its potential for Gold, Nb-Ta and REEs.


Pan concentrate stream sampling has been well underway for the last two weeks. Numerous follow-up samples have been taken around and to the north of the 10km Nb-Ta anomalous ridgeline, and these along with a number of additional soil samples scheduled for collection from the best anomalous ridgelines will be submitted for laboratory analysis. ECR’s Technical Director Adam Jones will be on the ground for the next two weeks to map and sample the areas showing the best anomalies to date. The Board look forward to reporting these results back to shareholders in the coming months.


This announcement has been reviewed by Adam Jones, Technical Director of Exploration at ECR Minerals plc. Adam Jones is a professional geologist and is a Member of the Australian Institute of Geoscientists (MAIG). He is a qualified person as that term is defined by the AIM Note for Mining, Oil and Gas Companies.



ECR Minerals plc Tel: +44 (0) 20 7929 1010
David Tang, Non-Executive Chairman

Andrew Haythorpe, CEO



Website: www.ecrminerals.com
WH Ireland Ltd   Tel: +44 (0) 207 220 1666
Nominated Adviser

Katy Mitchell / Andrew de Andrade

SI Capital Ltd Tel: +44 (0) 1483 413500
Nick Emerson
Novum Securities Limited  Tel: +44 (0) 20 7399 9425

Jon Belliss

Brand Communications Tel: +44 (0) 7976 431608
Public & Investor Relations
Alan Green


ECR Minerals is a mineral exploration and development company. ECR’s wholly owned Australian subsidiary Mercator Gold Australia Pty Ltd (“MGA”) has 100% ownership of the Bailieston and Creswick gold projects in central Victoria, Australia, has six licence applications outstanding which includes one licence application lodged in eastern Victoria. (Tambo gold project). MGA is currently drilling at the Bailieston Blue Moon Project (EL5433) and undertaking geochemical exploration on the Creswick (EL6148) project and has an experienced exploration team with significant local knowledge in the Victoria Goldfields and wider region.

ECR also owns 100% of an Australian subsidiary LUX Exploration Pty Ltd (“LUX”) which has three approved exploration permits covering 946 km2 over a relatively unexplored area in Queensland, Australia.

Following the sale of the Avoca, Moormbool and Timor gold projects in Victoria, Australia to Fosterville South Exploration Ltd (TSX-V: FSX) and the subsequent spin-out of the Avoca and Timor projects to Leviathan Gold Ltd (TSX-V: LVX), Mercator Gold Australia Pty Limited has the right to receive up to A$2 million in payments subject to future resource estimation or production from projects sold to Fosterville South Exploration Limited.

ECR holds a 90% interest in the Danglay gold project; an advanced exploration project located in a prolific gold and copper mining district in the north of the Philippines, which has a 43-101 compliant resource. ECR also holds a royalty on the SLM gold project in La Rioja Province, Argentina and can potentially receive up to US$2.7 million in aggregate across all licences

Alan Green discusses Rare Earths Elements, and the investment case for Altona Rare Earths #ANR on the Stockbox Research podcast

Alan Green discusses Rare Earths Elements, and the investment case for Altona Rare Earths #ANR on the Stockbox Research podcast

Kavango Resources #KAV – Ditau Project update – drill targets identified

Kavango Resources plc (LSE:KAV), the exploration company targeting the discovery of world-class mineral deposits in Botswana, is pleased to announce an update on the Company’s Ditau Project (“Ditau”), searching for Rare Earth Elements (“REEs”).

Ditau is held in a 50/50 Joint Venture with Power Metal Resources plc (LSE:POW) (“Power Metal”). Kavango is the operator.


Ø Geophysical and geochemical surveys completed on 12 targets areas

Ø 7 specific drill targets identified

–    Each target includes a possible carbonatite intrusive body lying within range of reverse circulation (“RC”) drilling

–    All targets within 300m depth

–    3 of the 7 targets classified as “high priority”

Ø Target I1 is a large, intense magnetic dipole

–    Spans 17km by 8km

–    Shallow depth to source of less than 100m

–    Kavango believes I1 sits just under the Kalahari sands

–    Lies at an intersection of two major regional fault zones

–    Anomalous niobium values identified. Niobium is used in various superconducting materials and industrial alloys

Ø Target I4

–    Spans 7.5km by 5km

–    Shallow depth to source of less than 100m

Ø Target I10

–    Spans 2.5km by 2.8km

–    High AMT resistivity, coincidental with a gravity high

Ø Data processing and interpretation in progress for final drill readiness

Ø Environmental Management Plan in place

Ben Turney, Chief Executive Officer of Kavango Resources, commented:

“While our primary focus has been on developing our interests in the KSZ and KCB, we have been much encouraged by the number of drillable intrusive targets identified at Ditau. Most of these appear to be post Karoo in age and lying at a shallow depth beneath Kalahari sand cover.

It is particularly encouraging to have identified seven drill-ready targets, with three of those being classified as high priority. Carbonatite hosted deposits of Rare Earth Elements (REEs) hold significant strategic and commercial value. Kavango’s targets are relatively shallow, which should make it straightforward to determine this project’s potential

We look forward to revisiting Ditau later this year, once we’ve completed our other high-impact drill campaigns.”

Exploration at Ditau

Kavango has identified 12 ring structures within the two prospecting licences making up the Ditau Project.

Falconbridge Explorations Ltd identified a similar large ring structure (KW2), located 23km to the north of Ditau, in the 1970s. On drilling KW2, anomalous values of niobium were detected in carbonatite rock (REEs were not assayed for at the time). Niobium is used in various superconducting materials and industrial alloys.

KW2 is thought to be part of a “cluster” of post-Karoo, carbonatites in the Kang area, of which Ditau is a part.

There is increasing evidence that at least some of the ring structures at Ditau contain carbonatite.  An integrated exploration programme of surveys is being undertaken over the 12 ring structures (targets).

Each target is undergoing the following assessments/surveys:

SOIL GEOCHEMISTRY: 3 lines of soil geochemical sampling with specific attention to values of Niobium and REEs

CSAMT & AMT SURVEYING: To “map” the lithological contacts to determine conductivity and resistivity. The CSAMT survey was carried out using Geometrics’ Stratagem EH4 unit, which measures ground electromagnetic signals and calculates ground resistivity down to depths of 1km.

Most targets were surveyed using the low-frequency version of the Stratagem without a transmitter (AMT), which sees down to 1.6km. Readings were taken at 50m station intervals along a profile.

GROUND MAGNETIC SURVEYING: The Earth is like a giant magnet due to ferromagnesian minerals in its core. Locally, various rocks have different magnetic properties due to variable magnetic mineral content. Carbonatites usually produce magnetic “high” anomalies compared to their host rocks.

The G856AX proton precession magnetometer was used in the ground magnetic surveys. One G-856AX was used as a “base station” magnetometer taking readings at 30-second intervals and the other as a hand-carried instrument with a simple, push button operation. Readings were taken at 12.5m intervals along profiles.

GRAVITY SURVEYING: Carbonatites usually have higher density than their host rocks.

Gravimeters are generally used to measure relative gravity, of which there is a wide variety. The most modern gravimeters are Autograv, which include significant improvements compared to the old spring based systems.

An Autograv CG-3 gravimeter was used in the survey on Target I10. Readings were taken every 50m with a local base station visited 3 times a day. The Autograv obtains a reading by continuously averaging a series of one-second samples.

DATA INTERPRETATION: The Company’s approach to this involves “layering” survey data sets on geological and structural maps, to produce drill targets.


Ø Interpretation of the results from the first 7 ring structure drill targets has identified 3 priority targets which demonstrate good potential to host to carbonatite (I1, I4 and I10).

–    I1 is a large, intense magnetic dipole that spans 17km by 8km and has a shallow depth to source of less than 100m. I1 lies at an intersection of two major regional fault zones.

–    I4 spans 7.5km by 5km and has a shallow depth to source of less than 100m.

–    I10 spans 2.5km by 2.8km and exhibits high AMT resistivity, coincidental with a gravity high.

Ø These targets appear to sub-outcrop just below the Kalahari sand cover (c.70m), within easy reach of RC drilling within 300m of service.

Ø Anomalous niobium values have been detected on one of these targets (Target I1).

Plans for further Work

Ø Further surveys will be completed on the remaining 3 ring structure targets.

Ø It is proposed to drill the 3 top priority targets before the end of the year. The Environmental Management Plan is in place.

Ø Samples from the drilling will be assayed for whole rock geochemistry and REEs.

The POW/KAV Joint Venture

The Ditau PLs are held in the name of Kavango and are subject to a JV Agreement in which each company holds a 50% interest via Kanye Resources plc. Exploration costs are equally shared. Kavango is the operator. Application has been made to transfer the PLs into a recently established Botswana JV company, Kanye Resources (Pty) Ltd. There are plans to IPO Kanye Resources plc on a recognised stock exchange.

Further information in respect of the Company and its business interests is provided on the Company’s website at www.kavangoresources.com and on Twitter at #KAV.

For further information please contact:

Kavango Resources plc     

Ben Turney


First Equity (Joint Broker)

+44 207 374 2212

Jason Robertson             

SI Capital Limited (Joint Broker)          

+44 1483 413500

Nick Emerson

Kavango Competent Person Statement

The technical information contained in this announcement has been read and approved by Mr Mike Moles (BSc (Geology) & BSocSci (African Studies), who is a Member of the Australian Institute of Mining & Metallurgy (MAusIMM) and has sufficient experience that is relevant to the style of mineralisation and type of deposits under consideration to qualify as a Competent Person as defined in the 2012 Edition of the ‘Australasian Code for Reporting of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves’. Mr Moles is a beneficial shareholder of Kavango Resources plc.



The Ditau Project comprises two prospecting licences (“PLs”) (PL169/2012 & PL010/2019) that cover an area of 1,386km2. Geophysical and geochemical analyses by Kavango in the two PLs have identified 12 “ring structures”.

The “ring structures” have the potential to host carbonatite rocks.

Carbonatites are the principal source of rare earth elements (REEs) including the much sought-after elements Neodymium (Nd) and Praseodymium (Pr), which are used in the manufacture of the new generation of electric vehicles (EVs), magnets and other high-tech applications. Other elements/minerals associated with carbonatites include Niobium, Phosphates, Monazite, Strontium, Magnetite and even Copper.

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