Blue Sky Uranium Receives Exceptional Test Results from Ivana Deposit Sample Material
Achieving a uranium discovery and defining a large deposit are important accomplishments for a junior explorer. However, the subsequent work to establish project economics for advancement towards mine development is the real challenge. Investigating a variety of project scenarios and conducting a thorough review of metallurgical and processing options can represent the make-or-break to establish a producing mine.
With a significant uranium and vanadium resource already defined for the Ivana deposit located in Argentina, Blue Sky Uranium Corp. (CA: BSK – $0.14 & US: BKUCF – $0.11 & GER: MAL2 – €0.10) is working to determine critical economic factors that will be involved in the decision on whether the project has the potential for profitable mining operations. Under the stewardship of the Company’s Technical Advisor Mr. Chuck Edwards, recognized as one of the most distinguished experts on uranium deposits, representative sample material was extracted from the Ivana deposit and submitted for further analysis.
This week the Company reported very favorable results from the metallurgical testing and recovery circuit optimization process that was completed using this sample material. After a round of crushing and grinding of the resource sample, a two stage recovery circuit was designed to process the mineralization. The first stage of processing involved concentrating the uranium and vanadium to remove as much of the waste rock as possible, while reducing the loss of the desired metals to a minimum. The intense process involved no fewer than 20 separate sets of screening and wet scrubbing tests to determine the most effective method to separate the fine and coarse particles, reducing the total volume of material while maintaining most of the metals grade. From this work a circuit was designed that achieves a leach feed optimized to recover 89% of the head grade for the sample. An exceptionally strong result!
The second stage of the process involved six sets of tests for an alkaline leaching circuit, to investigate, amongst others, reagent concentration. The testing determined that the sample material performed well under a conventional and relatively inexpensive processing circuit. The resource material was favorable as it did not require a flotation circuit or the addition of oxides to improve metallurgical performance. Moreover, low reagent consumption was recorded in the processing operation. An optimized leach circuit was determined from this work with an extremely positive operating performance to achieve 95% recovery of the metals content from the leach feed.
Based on the results of the two stage processing circuit, the sample material yielded overall recovery efficiency of 85% for the uranium, and 53% for the vanadium. This is considered an excellent result and is even more favorable considering that the processing technology necessary for this performance was at the lower end of the cost basis for a typical uranium recovery plant.
The planned development of nuclear power in Argentina has placed a priority on advancing a uranium production source within the country. Blue Sky controls 100% of the Amarillo Grande uranium project, where the Ivana deposit is located. The Company believes this project may ultimately be developed through to a producing uranium and vanadium mine, and has committed to advance towards that objective.
The current market environment for uranium and vanadium is very strong with both metals trending higher in value. This provides another tailwind for Blue Sky to advance its project during the window of positive resource demand. With this successful completion of metallurgical testing and the design of a processing circuit to achieve superior results from Ivana sample material, Blue Sky has taken a very large step forward.
The expectation for a robustly effective processing circuit to produce significant recovery of uranium and vanadium, at low projected costs and with conventional technology, vastly improves the outlook for the viability of an operating mine.
Blue Sky will now focus attention to the next level of project development as it works to present an NI 43-101 resource report for the deposit, and continues to prepare a Preliminary Economic Assessment which will include data that was established from the test work.
Each stage successfully navigated in the development process serves to move the project further along the value curve. With an attractive deposit in hand, the Amarillo Grande project is worth more than a similar greenfields exploration prospect. And defining an economic production scenario adds much greater value to the story. In addition, the favorable setting of the deposit and its location within a jurisdiction that is supportive of mining activity and desirous to secure a source of uranium production also builds the value proposition for this project.
Therefore as Blue Sky aggressively moves forward with its agenda to qualify the Ivana Deposit as a legitimate mine development candidate, the intrinsic value for the project increases and supports a higher market value for the stock. Smallcaps recommendation: BUY.
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