Obtala Resources Ltd OBT Operational Update

  Obtala Resources Ltd (OBT) - Operational Update

RNS Number : 1789P
Obtala Resources Limited
22 October 2012




22 October 2012

                           Obtala Resources Limited

                                      

                         ("Obtala" or the "Company")

                                  (AIM: OBT)

                                      

     Preliminary metallurgical testwork at the Bushveld Iron Ore Project



The Board of Obtala  Resources Limited, the  natural resources investment  and 
development company, announces  the following  RNS made  by Bushveld  Minerals 
Limited this morning:





Obtala Resources                                          +44 (0) 20 7099 1940

Francesco Scolaro - Chairman; Simon Rollason - Managing   
Director

www.obtalaresources.com
Macquarie Capital (Europe) Limited

(Nomad and Broker)
Steve Baldwin; Nicholas Harland                           +44 (0) 20 3037 2000



                            Bushveld Minerals Ltd

                   ("Bushveld" or the "Company", AIM:BMN )

                              Operational Update

     Preliminary metallurgical testwork at the Bushveld Iron Ore Project

Bushveld Minerals Limited, a mineral  development company focused on iron  and 
tin projects in southern Africa, is  pleased to provide an update on  progress 
in its metallurgical testwork on the Bushveld Iron Ore Project.

Highlights:

Positive  preliminary  magnetite  recoveries   and  high  grade   concentrates 
achievable on both fine  and coarse materials from  the Massive Magnetite  Ore 
("Massive Ore"):

Fine fractions: The preliminary Davis Tube Test ("DTT") metallurgical testwork
undertaken on ˂75μm  fraction shows  79% - 84%  recovery for  Fe₂O₃, V₂O₅  and 
TiO₂, and a magnetic separator concentrate grade in excess of 78% Fe₂O[3], 19%
TiO₂ and 0.36% V₂O₅.

Coarse fractions:  Preliminary  Dense  Medium  Separation  ("DMS")  tests  on 
coarse (-12mm and -6mm)  fractions shows 73% -  80% recovery for Fe₂O₃,  V₂O₅ 
and TiO₂, and a  concentrate grade in  excess of 70%  Fe₂O[3], 18.5% TiO₂  and 
0.32% V₂O₅.



Fortune Mojapelo, CEO, Bushveld Minerals  explained that: "The results of  the 
first metallurgical testwork  are in line  with our expectations  and mark  an 
important milestone  for  Bushveld while  reaffirming  our confidence  in  the 
project. The  positive  preliminary  recoveries  and  concentrate  grades  for 
Fe[2]O[3], TiO[2] and V[2]O[5] that are achievable at coarse sizes of as  much 
as 12mm are very encouraging and should eliminate or minimise the need to mill
the product  down  to fines,  thus  significantly reducing  energy  and  water 
requirements. The relative ease of  transporting coarse material (compared  to 
finely ground concentrate) will further enhance the project's economics."



Metallurgy

The scope of the testwork has  been defined to investigate extractability  and 
pyrometallurgical characteristics  of  the  Company's Iron  Ore  Project.  The 
Metallurgical and mineralogical characterization and densimetric testwork  was 
conducted by SGS (www.sgs.com)  with advisory input  from PESCO, ore  dressing 
specialists.

The metallurgical testing comprises two  parallel programmes that are  focused 
on the Massive  Ore and  the Disseminated Magnetite  Ore ("Disseminated  Ore") 
that was  identified in  the Bushveld  Minerals geological  model in  the  P-Q 
Magnetite Zone.

Both  ore   types  are   being  subjected   to  extractability   and   limited 
pyrometallurgical   testwork    incorporating   pre-reduction    tests.    The 
pre-reduction tests will  test the  potential for  a value-added,  pre-reduced 
iron ore product product rather than a plain concentrate.

The focus of Bushveld's metallurgical testwork since June 2012 has been on the
Massive Ore. Testwork on the Disseminated Ore has recently also commenced  and 
results from this will be announced in due course.



TESTWORK ON THE MASSIVE ORE

Extractability/concentration  and   limited   pyrometallurgy   (pre-reduction) 
testwork currently underway on the Massive Ore is as follows:



Extractability / Concentration Tests:

Various fraction sizes have been investigated,  applying DTT to the 75μm  fine 
fractions while DMS techniques  were applied to analyse  the 6mm to 12mm  size 
fractions.

The objective is  to determine  the mineralogy of  the ore,  the potential  to 
concentrate the ore by both magnetic  separation and DMS, and to identify  the 
optimal  grind  size  for  concentration  and  the  grade  of  the   resulting 
concentrate.

While observed  recoveries on  the grind  fractions described  above are  very 
positive, additional testwork at  other fraction sizes,  ranging from 38μm  to 
3mm, is also underway, results of  which will be announced before 31  December 
2012. The  intention is  to determine  the grind  fraction at  which  optimal 
recoveries can be expected.



Initial Davis Tube Tests (˂75μm):

The DTT recoveries  and concentrate grade  for a  80% < 75  micron grind  feed 
processed at 1 320 Gauss for the massive magnetite are as follows:

Mass Recovery to  Grade           Recovery            Grade in
    Mags (%)       (%)              (%)              concentrate
                                                         (%)
                   Fe   TiO₂ V₂O₅    Fe    TiO₂ V₂O₅    Al₂O₃    SiO₂ MgO  CaO
      63.4        55.0  19.2 0.36   83.6   79.5 78.7    1.96     1.16 0.94 0.1



Coarse Grind DMS Tests (-6mm & 12mm):

The following tables show recoveries and concentrate grades at a 6mm and  12mm 
top size for the magnetite recovered at the Massive Zone at a specific gravity
(SG) of 3.6:

Top     Mass     Grade           Recovery            Grade in
size Recovery to  (%)              (%)              concentrate
      Sinks (%)                                         (%)
                  Fe   TiO₂ V₂O₅    Fe    TiO₂ V₂O₅    Al₂O₃    SiO₂ MgO  CaO
6mm     61.9     50.1  19.0 0.33   73.4   74.9 78.5    2.88     4.66 1.65 0.75
12mm    67.3     48.9  18.5 0.32   79.2   79.8 89.7    3.29     5.87 1.73 0.96



Liberation  studies  of  -6mm  and  -12mm  sample  sizes  confirmed  a   close 
association  of  magnetite  and   ilmenite.  These  were  upgraded   together, 
suggesting that  the  12mm  fraction  may be  sufficient  to  obtain  economic 
recoveries  with  equally  attractive  product  grades.  The  differences   in 
recoveries between  the  two  size fractions  were  minimal,  indicating  that 
concentration is possible for fairly coarse top sizes.

These positive results indicate that good recoveries can be achieved at fairly
coarse top  sizes creating  scope for  a concentrate  product, which  requires 
significantly less power than a fine top size concentrate. This is expected to
contribute positively to the economics of the project.



Pyro Metallurgical Tests: Pre-reduction

Pre-reduction testwork will  be undertaken  on both  the fine  and the  coarse 
grind concentrate (from 6mm to 12mm). The process comprises of heating the ore
together with  a solid  reductant to  temperatures that  are typically  around 
1000°C (below  the melting  point of  the ore).  Under these  conditions,  the 
Fe[3]O[4] in the ore is reduced  to metallic iron, resulting in  significantly 
less electrical energy being required in the subsequent melting processes than
if reduction had to be affected as well.

The objective  of the  pre-reduction  testwork is  to  evaluate the  scope  to 
further upgrade this material to a higher value product that could compete  in 
the scrap metal market.  Initial test work will  be undertaken on the  Massive 
component of the P-Q Magnetite Layer during this quarter with results expected
before end of 31 March 2013.

Furthermore, bench-scale smelting tests will be undertaken on the fine (˂75μm)
concentrates. Tests with both fluxed and non-fluxed ore will be carried out in
order to  determine  characteristics  of vanadium  and  titanium  partitioning 
between metal and slag.

Metallurgical testwork on the Disseminated  Ore is underway and comprises,  as 
with the Massive Ore, extractability/concentrating and pre-reduction testwork.
The results of this testwork are expected before the end of 31 March 2013.







Enquiries:info@bushveldminerals.com

Bushveld Minerals             +27 (0) 11 268 6555

Fortune Mojapelo
Fox Davies                   +44 (0) 20 3463 5000

Jonathan Evans
Tavistock Communications     +44 (0) 20 7920 3150

Jos Simson/ Jessica Fontaine
Tielle Communications         +27 (0) 83 307 7587

Stéphanie Leclercq

                     This information is provided by RNS

           The company news service from the London Stock Exchange

                                   - ENDS -

                                      



Notes to the editor

Bushveld Minerals  Limited is  a mineral  development company  focused on  the 
Bushveld Iron Ore Project  and the Mokopane Tin  Project, both located on  the 
northern limb of the Bushveld Complex, South Africa.



The Bushveld Iron Ore Project comprises two licenses covering 7,409 ha where a
JORC compliant open-castable  resource of 633  million tonnes (comprising  260 
million tonnes Indicated and a further  373 million tonnes Inferred) has  been 
established from a  4.5 km  strike length.  Further drilling  along strike  is 
expected to  significantly add  to the  resource on  the basis  of  identified 
strike extensions  several kilometres  long  to the  north  and south  of  the 
project area with a target resource planned  in excess of 1 billion tonnes.  A 
scoping study on the project is underway for completion in Q1 2013.



The Mokopane  Tin  Project consists  of  one  licence covering  13,422  ha  of 
open-castable disseminated tin resource. The  Company has explored one  target 
and plans to drill at a further four targets. The Company has a JORC  resource 
in excess of 5,000 tonnes of tin and is looking to expand the resource base by
undertaking a drilling  programme on the  other three targets  in the  licence 
area and one  target in  a licence area  currently under  application. In  the 
longer term, the  Company intends  to expand  the resource  base by  acquiring 
further projects.



The Company was admitted  to the Alternative Investment  Market of the LSE  in 
March 2012.



The scientific and  technical information contained  within this  announcement 
has been reviewed and approved by Jan Rabe, Senior Process Engineer at  PESCO, 
the metallurgical  advisor to  the  Company. Rabe  has  an honours  degree  in 
metallurgy and  over  11  years'  experience  as  a  practising  metallurgical 
engineer.



                     This information is provided by RNS
           The company news service from the London Stock Exchange

END


MSCPGGAUUUPPUQP -0- Oct/22/2012 06:07 GMT
 
Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.