New Mexican lithium discovery for Australian-Canadian partners

Vancouver-based Alix Resources and Perth-based Lithium Australia NL have just spotted lithium- rich clay mineralization near the Tule Concession at their Electra Project in the state of Sonora, Mexico.

According to a press release, the discovery has been traced for approximately one kilometer on a newly applied for property named Agua Fria. The mineralization is dipping shallowly to the east, with an apparent thickness of 20 to 30 meters.

The assays result from surface reconnaissance sampling ranged from 347ppm to 1000ppm Li, the highest values received to date from the project. Both companies say these results are anomalous.

“Fertile clays, within the geological environment of the project area, generally exhibit low lithium grades. Results in the range of 100-200 ppm Li may be considered to be anomalous and grades in excess of 1000ppm are often included in Resource calculations,” Lithium Australia’s statement read.

The Electra Project consists of two exploration properties, the Tule Concession and the Tecolote Concession, contiguous to Bacanora Minerals' Sonora Lithium Project, which is hosted in lithium-bearing hectorite and polylithionite clays within a volcano-sedimentary sequence.

Analysts have said that lithium will be a very profitable sector within mining in the next five years, particularly due to an increased demand for lithium-ion batteries to be used in electric vehicles and battery-based energy storage.

Joe Lowry, the president of advisory firm Global Lithium, expects global demand for lithium carbonate to rise to between 280,000 and 285,000 tonnes by 2020 from about 163,000 tonnes in 2015.