CALGARY, June 18, 2013 /CNW/ - Uravan Minerals Inc. (Uravan), in collaboration
with Cameco Corporation (Cameco), the Queen's Facility for Isotope Research
(QFIR)(1), and Environmental BioTechnologies Inc. (EBT)(2) are conducting a
multi-faceted surface geochemical sampling program over the Centennial uranium
deposit (Centennial Survey), located on the Virgin River structural trend
within the south-central portion of the Athabasca Basin(3), Saskatchewan [map
link]. The Centennial deposit is a high-grade unconformity-type uranium
deposit occurring at a depth of approximately 800 meters that is currently in
the drill-developed stage by Cameco and its joint venture partners, Areva
Resources Canada Inc. (AREVA) and Formation Metals Inc. (Coronation Mines).
The Centennial Survey is an applied research study that will capitalize on our
cumulative knowledge obtained from previous surface studies, including the
Cigar West Study(4) and surveys conducted over Uravan's active exploration
projects. The objective of this survey is to advance our remote sensing
geochemical technology by obtaining a better understand of (a) the processes
by which elements migrate from a deposit at depth to the surface environment,
and (b) how these elements can be better characterized to determine whether
they are deposit-sourced geochemical signals versus the natural geochemical
composition of the surface environment.
The survey will be completed in June 2013 and managed by Uravan's technical
group. The sampling grid consists of 491 survey stations. A primary sampling
grid covering a 600 x 950 meter area centered over the surface projection of
the Centennial deposit will consist of 230 sample stations distributed on an
offset 50 meter grid. An additional 261 survey stations will be distributed on
100, 200 and 500 meter spacing extending farther into background away from the
deposit [map link].
The sample media collected will consist of B- and C-horizon soils and
tree-cores from black spruce and/or jack pine trees. Sample preparation of the
tree-cores and separation of the clay-size fraction (<2μm) from the B-and
C-horizon soils will be completed by QFIR. All clay-size sample material
from the B-and C-horizons soil samples will be analysed at Acme Laboratories
in Vancouver by ICP-MS following an aqua regia digestion for a suite of
fifty-three (53) elements, plus all rare earth elements (REE) and lead (Pb)
isotopes. QFIR will also conduct analytical work on tree-cores where they
will undergo total digestion and analysis using high resolution ICP-SFMS for
fifty (50) elements and Pb isotopes.
A separate A-horizon soil sample from each survey station will be collected
for analysis using EBT's Microbial Exploration Technology (MET) process.
Conceptually, the MET analysis measures the level of hydrocarbon metabolizing
microbes living in the near surface aerobic environment. Elevated populations
of these micro-organisms in a soil sample may be indicative of thriving
microbial activity due to an increase in hydrocarbon gas flux (primarily
methane) that has migrated to the surface from the redox environment of a
uranium ore deposit at depth.
Since 2008, Uravan and QFIR have collaborated on several surface geochemical
surveys and studies designed to develop new geochemical and analytical
technologies that will help identify the surface expression of deeply buried
unconformity-type uranium deposits with the objective to vector drilling
toward bedrock sources of uranium mineralization. These studies have
identified specific element associations and isotopic compositions in
trees-cores and clay minerals from soils, which potentially originated from
uranium mineralization at depth.
In 2009, Uravan and QFIR completed a collaborative research study with AREVA,
involving a multi-faceted surface geochemical sampling survey over the Cigar
West uranium deposit, a known high-grade unconformity-type uranium deposit
(Cigar West Survey(4)). Data analysis and interpretation of the results of the
Cigar West Survey clearly identified anomalous pathfinder elements, lead (Pb)
isotopic compositions ((207)Pb/(206)Pb) and elevated microbial activity (MET
analysis) residing in the surface environment (soils and vegetation) that were
mobilized from the deposit below at depths greater than 450 meters.
Based on the knowledge gained from the Cigar West Study, in 2011 Uravan and
QFIR entered into a Collaborative Research and Development grant (CRD grant)
funded by Uravan with matching funds from the Natural Sciences and Engineering
Research Council of Canada (NSERC)( 5) (press release dated April 26, 2011)
These applied research studies included surface geochemical surveys over
Uravan's Johannson, Outer Ring, Matheson, Halliday and Stewardson projects in
the Athabasca Basin. Results from these studies revealed positive lead
isotopic ((207)Pb/(206)Pb) compositions and associated pathfinder elements
occurring in certain soil components (clay-separates from B- and C-horizon
soils) and tree-core samples that potentially highlight bedrock sources of
uranium mineralization at depth.
As a result of these surface geochemical surveys, drill programs were
completed in 2011 and 2012 on the Outer Ring, Matheson and Halliday projects.
Drill-holes from these programs were positioned to test anomalous surface
geochemical signatures that potentially correspond to uranium mineralization
at depth. Data analysis and interpretation of the results of these drill
programs clearly suggests that certain pathfinder elements and isotopic
compositions that were active at the unconformity and underlying basement
rocks have migrated to the surface environment where their concentrations have
been measured. Although this drilling resulted in the intersection of
anomalous radioactivity at the unconformity and underlying basement rocks, no
economic uranium mineralization was encountered.
Mr. Larry Lahusen, CEO of Uravan states: "The results from our 2011 and 2012
drill programs suggest that a better correlation between the anomalous surface
signatures and drilling results is essential. The sampling methodology and
analytical protocols that will be carried out during the Centennial Survey are
designed to potentially identify the geochemical signals in the soils and
trees-cores that are related to the Centennial uranium deposit below versus
the geochemical signature inherent from the surface media."
Dr. Colin Dunn, P. Geo., technical advisor for Uravan, is the
Qualified Person for the purposes of NI 43-101 with respect to
the technical information in this press release. Dr. Colin
Dunn, an independent specialist in biogeochemistry, is working
closely with Uravan's technical group and QFIR to advance the
interpretation of biogeochemical results.
This press release may contain forward looking statements including those
describing Uravan's future plans and the expectations of management that a
stated result or condition will occur. Any statement addressing future events
or conditions necessarily involves inherent risk and uncertainty. Actual
results can differ materially from those anticipated by management at the time
of writing due to many factors, the majority of which are beyond the control
of Uravan and its management. In particular, this news release contains
forward-looking statements pertaining, directly or indirectly, to the use of
proceeds of the Offering. Readers are cautioned that the foregoing list of
risk factors should not be construed as exhaustive. These statements speak
only as of the date of this release or as of the date specified in the
documents accompanying this release, as the case may be. The Corporation
undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking
statements except as expressly required by applicable securities laws.
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Service Provider (as that
term is defined in the policies of the Exchange) accepts responsibility for
the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
Larry Lahusen, CEO Uravan Minerals Inc. Tel: 403-264-2630
SOURCE: Uravan Minerals Inc.
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-0- Jun/18/2013 17:27 GMT
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