Matamec Explorations Inc. ("Matamec" or the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:MAT)(OTCQB:MHREF) is very pleased to provide a progress update on the flagship Kipawa project, a rare earths deposit enriched in heavies. Since 2015, Matamec has been focused on research to develop innovative methods to improve and optimize the mining and processing at Kipawa. These activities are summarized in the diagram below.
Kipawa Innovation Diagram: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/651d_e.jpg
"We have had the pleasure over the past couple of years to partner with leading universities and research centres to look into ways to improve the Kipawa Project," said André Gauthier, President and CEO of Matamec. "It's exciting to see the results of so much hard work from so many teams coming together. We expect to be able to share more details about some of our recent innovations over the coming weeks and months."
Matamec's primary goal is to improve the overall project efficiency. It is pursuing this objective on numerous fronts, working with several groups of researchers in their different fields of expertise (see figure above). Research is being done to broaden the geological and mineralogical knowledge and characteristics of the Kipawa deposit, and to improve the accuracy of the modelling and estimation of the rare earth resources at Kipawa, as well as to evaluate the suitability of selective mining for the project.
In terms of metallurgy, testwork is underway to explore the possibility of utilizing flotation and ore sorting in the beneficiation process. New and innovative metallurgical processes are being reviewed and tested, particularly for increasing rare earth recoveries, and for rejecting impurities. A new research project focusing on the separation of rare earth elements will begin shortly as well.
Another important objective for the company is to minimize the project's environmental footprint. With this in mind, researchers are evaluating possible ways to generate the most stable form of tailings from Kipawa. In addition, we are investigating the production of potential by-products generated during the various metallurgical processes.
Finally, in parallel with the planning of the second mini-pilot plant, a new revision of the Demonstration Pilot Plant is being designed for Kipawa, incorporating all the positive results obtained from the aforementioned innovative activities.
Eliza Ngai, M.Eng, P.Eng, Metallurgist of the Company for the Kipawa project, is the qualified person according to the NI 43-101 standard, and is responsible for the technical content of this press release.