Leading Edge Materials Corp. ("LEM") or (the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:LEM)(OTCQB:LEMIF) is pleased to announce the first discovery of lithium mineralization in outcrop, and the completion of a ground magnetic survey, at the Company's 100% owned Bergby project.
Bergby lies in central Sweden, 25km north of the town of Gävle, and is secured by three exploration licenses that cover a total of 1,903 Ha. The site is close to infrastructure, with major roads, rail and power supply passing immediately adjacent to the claim boundaries.
Recent mapping at Bergby, in follow up to the identification of a lithium mineralized boulder field (see press releases dated 19th October 2016 and 4th November 2016), has discovered three areas of lithium mineralization in outcrop. Although the region is largely glacial soil covered, the few outcrops located include exposure of petalite and spodumene mineralized pegmatite with high grade lithium, similar to that previously observed in boulders.
Fifteen samples from three outcrop areas returned Li2O (lithium oxide) averaging 1.71% and ranging from 0.01% to 4.65%; and Ta2O5 (tantalum pentoxide) averaging 133 ppm and ranging from 16 ppm to 803 ppm (see Table 1). Samples included representative chip samples, composite samples and selective grab samples depending on outcrop quality, and were taken from three sites across an area of approximately 350m x 750m.
Furthermore, a small ground magnetic survey has been completed, to provide indication of the structural setting of the claim, and to assist with drill targeting. The survey covered 700m of strike of the lithium prospective sequence, and has defined a discrete magnetic low, as are often associated with lithium-cesium-tantalum (LCT) pegmatites.
Work is now underway to gain permits and prepare for a drilling program early in the first quarter of 2017.
Blair Way, President and CEO, stated, "This discovery of high grade lithium mineralized outcrops at Bergby, despite the extensive glacial soil cover, gives us confidence we are close to the source of the extensive mineralized boulder field. The Bergby discovery is now drill-ready, and we are excited to get LEM's maiden drilling program underway in the first quarter of next year."
Lithium has a strong and expanding market, due to the essential role it plays in lithium-based batteries for the automotive, consumer product and stationary electrify storage industries. The high electrochemical potential of lithium results in the high power to weight ratio that is essential for efficient mobile batteries. Europe is investing heavily in these emerging battery technologies, as part of the transition to a low-carbon economy.