THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Black Range Minerals (ASX: BLR) has received a funding boost from the company’s major shareholder and cornerstone investor, Azarga Resources.
Black Range said the$2 million of funds by way of an unsecured convertible loan facility would ensure the company has sufficient funds to continue the commercialisation of its Ablation technology Joint Venture while it continues to develop its 100 per cent-owned 90.9 million pound Hansen/Taylor Ranch uranium project in Wyoming.
Black Range holds a 50 per cent interest in Ablation through a joint venture with Ablation Technologies LLC.
Black Range said Ablation could have a very positive effect on the economics of developing not only the Hansen/Taylor project but also many other sandstone-hosted uranium deposits around the world.
In recent months the Ablation JV has been constructing a semi-commercial scale Ablation Unit, with nominal capacity of 5 tonnes per hour.
Initial hydraulic flow tests being undertaken on the three
interconnected Ablation modules that will comprise part of the 5tph
Ablation Unit that is nearing completion. Source: Company announcement
This 5tph Unit will be used to undertake large-scale tests on samples of ore from deposits that are potentially amenable to Ablation, to demonstrate the economic viability of the technology.
The 5tph Unit comprises six modules:
– A feed/slurry-mix tank;
– Three interconnected Ablation modules;
– A grain size classification (screening) module; and
– A dewatering module.
A slurry-mix tank and Ablation units are expected to be completed and fully operational within several weeks.
Ablation was patented by Wyoming-based Ablation Technologies LLC.
Black Range describes the technology as a low cost method of separating uranium mineralisation by applying a physical, grain-size separation process, to ore slurries.
No chemicals are added in the process, yet very high mineral recoveries can be achieved with considerable mass reduction, using grain-size classification to separate a high-value, high-grade ore product from a coarse-grained barren “clean sand” product.
Black Range claimed testwork has shown that, from amenable sandstone-hosted uranium ore types, typically more than 90 per cent of the uranium mineralisation can be separated into approx. 10 per cent of the initial sample mass.
Recent development work on a secondary upgrade circuit has seen recoveries in test work exceed 99 per cent.
Azarga has agreed to provide up to $2 million of funds by way of an unsecured convertible loan facility, which will be repayable in cash or in shares at one cent per share.
Azarga is under no obligation to draw-down any or all of the Facility, but can do so in amounts of up to $750,000 in the first month and thereafter up to $500,000 per month.
The term of the loan is 24 months and it is only convertible to shares at maturity, if not redeemed prior.