Our McIntosh Project, which comprises 16 tenements spanning ~550km2 in the East Kimberley region of Western Australia, is a large-scale, high quality flake graphite deposit. The McIntosh project area hosts known graphite deposits, but more recently the Company has been assessing the project for base metals (nickel-copper) and platinum group element (PGE) deposits, such as are known to occur in close proximity (Copernicus – copper & nickel and Panton – PGE) to the McIntosh tenements as well as regionally such as Panoramic Resources’ Savanah Nickel Operations.
JORC Mineral Resources for the McIntosh project currently stand at 23.8 million tonnes (Mt) grading 4.5 per cent total graphite carbon (TGC) for 1.1 million contained tonnes (5 April 2019).
In addition, there is a significant Exploration Target* comprising 50 to 220Mt grading between 2.0 and 5.0% TGC.
*Cautionary Statement – the potential quantity and grade of the Exploration Target is conceptual in nature, there is insufficient exploration work to estimate a mineral resource and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in defining a mineral resource.
Hexagon has focused on verifying the quality of the graphite flake as a driver of commercial value, rather than simply building up the “mining metrics”. Graphite is an industrial mineral where the focus needs to be on product quality and suitable commercial applications that match the product specifications. Hence much of its work has focused on the downstream transformation into a range of high purity battery and industrial applications.
Nickel is emerging as a key ‘energy material’ – a vital component for lithium ion battery chemistries. There has been no exploration for base metals or PGE on the McIntosh tenements since ~2005, which pre-dates recent discoveries based on new mineralisation models and targeting criteria, such as the nearby Buxton/IGO’s Merlin Nickel-Copper discovery. Base metal and PGE exploration potential is considered high given a more comprehensive understanding of the geology and geophysics, including the known nearby mineralisation at Savannah and Copernicus deposits and the more recent Merlin discovery.