March 2011 Updates To The TMR Advanced Rare-Earth Projects Index

by Gareth Hatch on March 10, 2011 · 12 comments

in Rare Earths, Tools & Metrics

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It’s been a busy month since our last monthly update to the TMR Advanced Rare-Earth Projects Index. Three 43-101-compliant resource estimates were published and thus we have new additions to the Index. The specific details of recent changes are as follows:

  • Ucore Rare Metals Inc. (TSX.UCU, OTCQX:UURAF) published an inferred resource estimate for the Bokan (Dotson / I & L) rare-earth project in Alaska, USA;
  • Pele Mountain Resources Inc. (TSX.V:GEM, PK:PMNHF) published an inferred resource estimate for the rare earths present at the Eco Ridge / Elliot Lake uranium project in Ontario, Canada; and
  • Commerce Resources Corp. (TSX.V:CCE, OTCQX:CMRZF, F:D7H) published an inferred resource estimate for the Eldor (Ashram) rare-earth project in Quebec,Canada.
  • The elemental data for the Mountain Pass project was updated to reflect a more widely used dataset;
  • The values for the in-situ TREO and basket price metrics were updated for all projects.
  • A chart showing in-situ TREO vs. basket price was added to the  Index page.

You can access the details via the Index page.

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1 Robert Gill March 10, 2011 at 3:13 pm

Hi Gareth

The Strategist (on Seeking Alpha) posted an interesting article today. He calculated the actual tonnage of HREE based on the TREO and % of HREE indicated by MCP, AVL, QRM, and UCU. It turns out that AVL & QRM appear to have a viable tonnage of HREE, but UCU’s tonnage is quite small. Even MCP has a viable tonnage, even though their HREE content is a small % of TREO. However, I see MCP only able to extract the HREE tonnage over a long period of time. So that leaves us with AVL & QRM as the biggest players for HREE.
Any comments on this?
Thanks
Robert

2 Gareth Hatch March 10, 2011 at 3:48 pm

@Robert Gill: how does one define “viable”? The article by The Strategist does not discuss production rate, or recovery rate, or the cost of capital required to establish such production rates. I am also somewhat bemused by the ongoing “need” by companies in the rare-earth junior mining sector, to bash each other, in the hope that people will “pick me! pick me!” for investment… and how this continues to be enabled by various pundits in the industry.

3 lawrence barrett March 10, 2011 at 9:03 pm

Hi Gareth
Have been watching Matamec MAT-V lately and there metallurgy looks very promising.They don’t seem to get much coverage and I would assume because of present NI 43101.
Do you have any thoughts on this?
Thanks
Lawrence

4 Jim Bus March 10, 2011 at 10:23 pm

Thanks, Gareth. The OTC/PK (US) symbol for Pele Mountain is PMNHF.

5 Gareth Hatch March 10, 2011 at 10:30 pm

@lawrence barrett: Matamec’s a relatively new story for most people. I also think that their approach to marketing can be a little quirky for the Toronto / Vancouver types.

@Jim Bus – I updated the info – thanks for the tip :-)

6 robit March 10, 2011 at 10:53 pm

Gareth > I wrote the reply to the Strategist listing the total weight of Eu + Tb + Dy in several of the deposits, working from the data in your TMR AREP Index. I hope my calculations were all correct. After I posted my reply I watched the interview of Dudley Kingsnorth and John Kaiser. Seems I chose my comparison elements well. Here are the comparison weights again plus the approximate current market cap in millions:
Mountain Pass > Molycorp > 4,765 t > $4,021 M
Mount Weld > Lynas > 18,518 t > $3,124 M
Nechalacho > Avalon > 115,181 t > $664 M
Bear Lodge > Rare Element Res. > 6,196 t > $483 M
Dubbo > Alkane > 15,691 t > $368 M
Kutessay II > Stans Energy > 6,458 t > $302 M
Kvanefjeld > Greenland Minerals > 68,591 t > $360 M
Nolans Bore > Arafura > 6,868 t > $393 M
Norra Karr > Tasman > 19,276 t > $224
Strange Lake > Quest > 56,319 t > $320 M
Zeus Kipawa > Matamec > 5,258 t > $58 M
Eldor > Commerce Resources > 24,895 t > $113 M

As the numbers show, the total weight of Eu + Tb + Dy currently estimated in Nechalacho is 24 times the weight of those 3 elements in Mountain Pass.

7 Max12345 March 11, 2011 at 2:43 am

Lynas plans to process its rare earths at that brand new (and rather expensive…but at least relatively safe) state-of-the-art plant in Malaysia. Where do some of these other smaller companies plan to process theirs? And how about transport? It seems to me that beyond finding and developing deposits “the better part of valor” in the rare earths game is where and how to process the goodies safely and in a way that will be accepted by any local communities involved. (please also note what Lynas is having to do just to get permission to load in Fremantle….this even though buyers and off-take agreements should pose no problem)….Wrong or right? ….& thanks for any comments.

8 GH March 11, 2011 at 1:53 pm

Gareth,

Data visualization is very helpful when done well, and IMHO your new chart is a nice example.

For the sake of clarity, please list the elements that were included when calculating the chart values, in the notes under the chart. Specifically, I don’t want to jump to the conclusion that they use the same formulas (ie. excluding Ho-Er-Tm-Yb-Lu) used by the Index pop-ups.

9 Gareth Hatch March 11, 2011 at 1:59 pm

@robit: thanks for the data.

@Max12345: the concentration and separation of rare earths is certainly something that any project is going to have to address, if it is to be successful.

@GH: Thanks for the note. You raise a good point, and I will add the note that you suggested. FYI, the elements used in the charts are consistent with the elements in the table (i.e. the prices for the more obscure heavy REOs are excluded from the calculations).

10 robit March 13, 2011 at 9:10 am

Jack has said before; “Dysprosium is key”. He says it again and provides a well calculated argument here:
http://www.glgroup.com/News/The-Effect-on-Neodymium-and-Dysprosium-Supply-of-Chinas-Domestic-Growth-52916.html

11 Robert Gill March 23, 2011 at 5:36 pm

@ Gareth

“Viable” would relate to current modelling given by the company. Not being a scientist, it is all I have to go on.

I totally agree that the “drumming up for support” crowd is out in full, throwing daggers at the competition and beating the drum for their “favorite” company. None more so than the battle between Lynas and Molycorp. Drives me insane, actually, as so much misquoted info is being presented as “fact”. The media is responsible for some of this also, as they are now hyping the future revelation of China’s export quotas. I mean really, can’t we just lay this to rest and wait until China publishes the data, probably sometime in June or July?

12 RG April 16, 2011 at 12:19 pm

spot on Gill.

Rare-Earth Projects Index is nicely presented work i like it. well done GH

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