Eclipse in JV agreement with Rio Tinto

Eclipse in JV agreement with Rio Tinto
Eclipse in JV agreement with Rio Tinto teaser

26 Aug 2016

Eclipse Metals has farmed out its Liverpool project uranium-gold-palladium tenements to Rio Tinto, who can earn a 90% interest in one of the five tenements located in the Alligators uranium field of Northern Territory by spending $5 million.

Rio Tinto also has the right of first refusal over other tenements held by Eclipse in the Northern Territory.
Rio Tinto must spend a minimum of $250,000 on exploration and will separately fund costs associated with achieving land access through the Northern Land Council and tenement grant.

In the first stage, Rio Tinto must complete a $1.5 million sole-funded exploration within three years to earn an initial 65% joint venture interest. They may then elect, as part of stage two of the agreement, to earn a 75% joint venture interest by spending an additional $2 million over a further three year period.

At the end of stage 2, Eclipse may elect to contribute pro rata to expenditure and maintain a 25% joint venture interest. In the event that Eclipse elects not to contribute at this point, Rio Tinto may elect to sole fund a further $1.5 million expenditure over two years to earn a 90% joint venture interest.

Upon Rio Tinto earning a 90% interest, Eclipse may elect to maintain a contributing 10% interest or sell its interest to Rio Tinto at fair market value.

Eclipse chairman Carl Popal said: The arrangements with Rio Tinto will mean that standout exploration targets will be given first-class technical assessment by one of the worlds largest and most successful mining and exploration companies.

We continue to seek the best results for the Eclipse shareholders and believe that this farm-in and joint venture arrangement significantly enhances the prospects of identifying and developing economically viable mineral deposits at the Liverpool project.

The Liverpool uranium project lies 285km east of Darwin, hosted within the world class Alligator Rivers uranium field. The Devils Elbow Prospect within ELA 27584, is situated 24km east of Camecos Caramel uranium resource; 41km southeast of the former Nabarlek uranium mine and some 68km east of the current Ranger uranium mine. The Ranger mine lies on the Ranger Fault which also passes through all the Eclipse Liverpool project tenements.

In 1987 and 1989, Uranerz Australia Pty Ltd conducted regional uranium exploration within the central part of ELA 27584, targeting uranium unconformity type deposits. Uranerz discovered the Devil's Elbow uranium-gold-palladium prospect, located within ELA27584, during a regional radiometric survey. Samples from shallow trenching yielded high grade uranium assays including 3.2% U3O8, 3.7% U3O8, 4.40% U3O8 and 5.8% U3O8, with 38.1g/t Au and 28.02g/t Pd, related to fractures within altered amygdaloidal basalt of the Nungbalgarri Volcanics.

Between 2006 and 2008, Cameco Australia Pty Ltd conducted regional uranium exploration within the current area of ELA 30165, targeting unconformity style uranium deposits, the nearby economic deposits at Ranger, Jabiluka, Koongarra and Nabarlek serving as exploration models.

Work carried out included general geological reconnaissance and a helicopter-supported surface sampling program targeting a number of illite and tourmaline alteration anomalies associated with a northeast-trending fault zone identified by an airborne Hyperspectral survey flown in 2006.

Cameco identified two types of mineralisation-related alteration haloes similar to Athabasca Basin (Canada) unconformity-style deposits that are currently used in the exploration models in Northern Australia, with anomalous illite, chlorite, dravite and hematite.

Reported from news.com.au | August 23, 2016

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