Global Lithium Resources (GL1) has completed the first stage of ore sorting trials at its Manna lithium project, 100 kilometres east of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia.
At the Steinert test facility in Perth, GL1 tested samples that displayed a 90 per cent increase in lithium oxide grades and a 93 per cent reduction in iron oxide from a mixed waste and pegmatite sample.
The company deliberately increased the amount of waste rock collected from its Manna project using diamond core drilling to test samples under proof of concept test work.
GL1 used a sample with a head grade of 0.88 per cent lithium oxide and 6.3 per cent iron oxide, which reduced the iron feed to 0.4 per cent, falling in line with the preferred iron levels below one per cent.
When the smaller-sized particles were combined with the accepted ore after sorting, lithium concentration remained high at 1.47 per cent. The overall process achieved a lithium recovery rate of 94 per cent. However, the iron content increased slightly to two per cent.
The ore sorting program forms part of Global’s wider scope of work at Manna and advances the company’s progress toward completing a definitive feasibility study (DFS) by December 2023.
“The Manna lithium project has the distinct advantage of having great visual control between ore, which is predominantly white in colour, and surrounding waste rock which appears dark grey to black,” GL1 Project Director Tony Chamberlain said.
“Initial ore sorting results have shown the technology is a perfect fit for Manna, with this impressive upgrade in lithium content ore sorting technology will ultimately provide greater operational flexibility within the mining operation and increase head grade to the mill.”
GL1 noted the results from its initial ore sorting test work have revealed “significant improvement” in available lithium could be achieved through incorporating a successful ore sorting process into the Manna flowsheet.
The company is aiming to perform more trials using larger bulk samples to further optimise its ore sorting parameters and obtain lithium recovery from its four targeted ore domains within its mineral resource.