MGX Minerals Inc. (CSE: XMG) (OTC: MGXMF) is pleased to announce the engagement of global mining equipment supplier Metso-Outotec (“Metso”) for its British Columbia Silicon Project. Metso has been tasked with providing design, equipment and mechanical engineering for the processing of high-grade silica from the Company’s wholly owned Gibraltar silica deposit into silicon metal 3303# grade. The primary piece of processing equipment is a sub-merged arc furnace (“SAF”). This electric arc furnace generates heat up to 1600 degrees Celsius sufficient to melt the quartzite. The liquid metal is then tapped and poured into bricks and rough crushed into 3”-4” pieces for shipment.
Global Silicon Shortage
The demand for silicon metal continues to grow and recent supply chain bottlenecks have limited overall supply, creating an opportunity for the distribution of silicon in Asia from North America. Increased demand for solar panels, microprocessors, and silicon alloys, due to its semi-conductor and structural properties, continue to create large scale shortages for silicon. Silicon metal 3303# grade is currently quoted at $3500 USD per tonne East China (January 4, 2022, price.metal.com/Silicon).
Silicon Sale and Distribution
MGX has recently entered into a non-binding Letter of Intent (”LOI”)for business development and distribution partnership (the “Partnership”) with Dong Bang Metal Co. Ltd (“Dong Bang’) of Korea for metallurgical grade silicon 3303# (see press release dated January 5, 2022). The Partnership has executed the LOI which outlines specific commercial terms including grade, quantity, price, delivery and distribution plan. Under certain terms and conditions, Dong Bang will receive exclusive distribution rights for Asia, inclusive of Korea and Japan.
Metallurgical testing on an one ton sample from the Company’s Gibraltar Silica deposit, located 95 kilometers north-east of Cranbrook, British Columbia, has indicated that the material is chemically suitable, as medium quality feedstock, for metallurgical-grade silicon. The one ton sample of quartzite from Gibraltar was shipped to an independent lab, Dorfner Anzaplan, an independent laboratory, for mineralogical analyses through X-ray diffraction analysis, chemical analyses through X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, grain size distribution, mineral processing analysis, automated optical sorting, and thermal stability testing. The sample was crushed and screened into fractions between 20–120 mm for evaluation of applicability of these fractions as feedstock for metallurgical-grade silicon production. Results indicate that the material, after comminution and classification fraction, is of high initial purity (99.5 wt.-%), making the fraction chemically suitable as medium quality feedstock material for metallurgical-grade silicon metal production.
The Gibraltar Silica Property is located approximately 95 kilometres northeast of Cranbrook, BC. It covers a sedimentary clastic-carbonate rock package located near the confluence of Kootenay and White River. Sedimentary rocks generally have a north-northwest strike, but locally a north-northeast strike is prominent. Minor folding was noted in the carbonate sequence immediately adjacent to quartzite unit. Two westerly dipping thrust faults (Hay, Carter, 1988) are believed to run north-south close to the eastern edge of the Gibraltar property.
The Company has completed 5 drill holes at Gibraltar. The holes were located at the Red Cloud (Gibraltar) quarry that was operated on a small scale in 1967. The objective of the drill program was to test subsurface dimensions of high purity quartzite. The Gibraltar North Zone has been sampled, mapped and the area located about 400 meters north of the south zone, represents the continuation of the Mount Wilson Formation quartzite.
Table 1. Gibraltar Drill Results
|DDH No.||Azimuth||Dip Deg.||Depth(m)||From’(m)||To(m)||Interval(m)||SiO2%|
(British Columbia Assessment Report 38566)
Andris Kikauka (P. Geo.), CEO of MGX Minerals, has prepared, reviewed and approved the scientific and technical information in this press release. Mr. Kikauka is a non-independent Qualified Person within the meaning of NI 43-101.
About MGX Minerals
MGX Minerals is a diversified Canadian resource and technology company with interests in strategic metals, precious metals, and energy technologies.