Medallion Resources Ltd. ("Medallion" or the "Company") today announced the initiation of lab-scale extraction tests of rare earths from monazite. The extraction will use the standard commercial monazite process to produce a rare-earth chemical concentrate, co-products and waste materials of the type expected from a commercial operation.
The rare-earth concentrate will provide a sample product for discussions with potential customers.
The monazite feedstock for the extraction process is provided by a major heavy-minerals-sands producer, who is currently in confidential discussions with Medallion to provide this material on a long-term basis. The extraction process and the resulting products build upon Medallion's previously announced metallurgical process-design work and represent an important step toward process refinement and ultimate commercialization of the Company's monazite strategy.
"Rare-earth prices have declined substantially from the peak of a few years ago, but they have stabilized over the past 12 months," said Don Lay, Medallion President & CEO. "Notably, pricing for neodymium and other magnet materials has remained strong and that has translated into solid demand for certain rare-earth chemical concentrates. It is important to take advantage of this market interest, given the impressive levels of the key magnet-application elements found in monazite feedstock."
The mineral monazite, a rare-earth-element phosphate, is the world's original rare-earth mineral source. Although found in hard-rock deposits, monazite is also readily available in significant quantities as a high-grade, by-product of heavy-mineral-sands operations.
Medallion's rare-earth production strategy is based on entering into long-term monazite supply agreements with reliable heavy-mineral-sands producers. This provides for the aggregation of monazite supply streams, large-scale mine-independent extraction, and marketing of a rare-earth concentrate. Medallion is positioning itself to help satisfy a percentage of non-China demand for rare-earth elements by providing a rare-earth chemical concentrate to downstream separation processors. This approach is expected to have relatively low capital and operating costs, as it uses a high purity, rare-earth-bearing monazite as input and a time-tested, commercially successful metallurgical process to extract the rare earths.
About Medallion Resources
Medallion Resources is focused on the opportunity for low-cost, near-term, rare-earth production by exploiting the mineral monazite. Monazite is a rare-earth phosphate that is available as a by-product from existing mining and mineral-sands sources, principally in the Indian Ocean basin. Rare earths are used in critical components for virtually all computing and mobile electronic products, as well as wind turbines, electric and hybrid vehicles, and strategic defense systems. Medallion is committed to following best practices and accepted international standards in all aspects of mineral processing and the safe management of waste materials. More about Medallion (TSX VENTURE:MDL)(OTCQB:MLLOF)(FRANKFURT:MRD) can be found at www.medallionresources.com.