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Lithium explorer scopes out mine potential near Dryden

Critical Resources begins building a case to develop its Mavis Lake Project
Drilling at Critical Resources' Mavis Lake Project, northeast of Dryden (Company photo)

An Australian company is eager to put a Dryden-area lithium deposit into production.

Critical Resources Ltd. has announced the start of a scoping study of its Mavis Lake Project in making the transition from an exploration company to a mine developer.

A scoping study is an initial first-step appraisal to determine whether a resource has the potential to develop into a mining project, 

Wave International, considered consulting specialists on lithium projects, will steer the study, which is due out by mid-year.

A news release from Critical Resources said the study will delve into the infrastructure needs and the construction and operating costs of a potential mine.

The company said it’s “primary objective is the rapid development” of Mavis Lake, located 19 kilometres northeast of Dryden.

The Perth-based firm has been on a fast-paced exploration schedule since acquiring the project in the fall of 2021. It recently picked up extra ground to grow its a long and narrow corridor of claims to almost 23,000-hectares as winter drilling is underway with two rigs.  

Critical Resources holds base metal and copper projects in Australia and Oman, and a stable of lithium properties in Northern Ontario, but Mavis Lake is considered its flagship project.

The company has made it clear it’s very much on the mine development track to service the North American electric vehicle sector. 

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Since finishing a 19,500-metre drilling program on the spodumene-bearing pegmatite rock at the end of last year, the company has posted a raft of high-grade assay results for the first-ever mineral resource estimate at Mavis Lake.

Spodumene is considered the most important lithium ore mineral because of its high lithium content. 
Another round of drilling is already underway with a minimum of 20,000 metres queued up for the remainder of this year.

Since October, the company has also been running a metallurgical testing program using drill core from Mavis Lake to get a better understanding of how to process the material into a concentrate form for prospective customers.

In a statement, Alex Cheeseman, the company’s managing director, said the project has tangible advantages with its proximity to rail, the Trans-Canada Highway, and nearby service and supply companies.

“Mavis Lake is truly unique in this perspective,” he said. “The results of the scoping study will define the forward work plan for the next few years as we advance the project. Importantly we will start to confirm operating size/scale potential and a targeted production timeline. These are key requirements to allow us to engage with potential strategic partners and customers. It is a fantastic time to be developing a lithium project in Canada.”