First Vanadium Corp. [FVAN-TSXV, FVANF-OTCQX, 1PY-FSE] said Tuesday it wants to evaluate the potential significance of a high-grade gold target on its Carlin Vanadium project near Elko, Nevada.
To assist the company with that effort, it has hired Dave Mathewson, a former regional exploration manager with Newmont Goldcorp Corp., [NGT-TSX, NEM-NYSE]. First Vanadium said it was Mathewson who has interpreted a Carlin-style high grade gold target at depth on the vanadium project which is located within Nevada’s prolific Carlin Gold Trend. The gold target is largely unexplored and has been identified at depth, the company said.
First Vanadium shares advanced on the news, rising 18.2% or $0.04 to 26 cents. The shares are currently trading in a 52-week range of 18 cents and $1.40.
Mathewson was involved in a number of gold discoveries in Nevada, both as regional exploration manager of Newmont Goldcorp, and more recently as founder of Gold Standard Ventures Corp. [GSV-TSX, GSV-NYSE].
“A very real and significant gold target exists on the Carlin Vanadium Project,’’ Mathewson said. It occurs at the intersection of three large structures, oriented north-south, northwest and northeast, respectively,” he said.
“These structural orientations are important controls of gold mineralization on the Carlin Gold Trend,’’ he added. Mathewson went to say that the gold target is coincident with a gravity high that suggests a large hydrothermal alteration system at depth, coupled with the strong possibility of favourable gold-hosting lithologies being at a reasonable range of drill depths on the property.
The announcement comes after First Vanadium recently released a maiden resource estimate for its Carlin Vanadium deposit. It said the National Instrument 43-101-compliant estimate was completed by SRK Consulting (U.S.) Inc. and replaces an earlier estimate that was announced in 2010.
As of February 1, 2019, First Vanadium has outlined an indicated resource of 24.64 million tonnes of grade 0.615% V205 or 303 million pounds using a cut-off grade of 0.3% V205. On top of that is an inferred resource of 7.19 million tonnes of 0.520% vanadium or 75 million pounds.
The deposit is considered to be the largest, highest grade primary vanadium deposit in North America, First Vanadium said in a press release on February 27, 2019. It is also the basis for a preliminary economic assessment which is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2020.
First Vanadium President and CEO Paul Cowley said the gold target adds to the property’s potential. “While not to detract from our primary focus on the vanadium resource, this attractive gold target, identified by such a respected and well-known Nevada explorer as Dave Mathewson, complements and provides an additional opportunity for our shareholders,” Cowley said.
“The company will explore options to advance evaluation of the gold target,” he said.
Vanadium is growing in importance for key industrial manufacturing sectors, notably in steel and renewable energy. More than 85% of the world’s vanadium is used in steel manufacturing applications.
Its importance to the energy sector is also growing rapidly with more than 10% of vanadium production used in energy storage where its substantial cost and performance benefits make it an alternative choice to lithium ion in several areas.
The Carlin Vanadium deposit is a black shale-hosted flat to shallow dipping vanadium deposit located a shallow depths, from zero to 60 metres below surface.
It is located on a property that consists of 72 unpatented mining claims, covering 1,140 acres. First Vanadium (formerly Cornerstone Metals Inc.) has an option to earn a 100% interest in the Carlin project, which is located six miles south of the mining community of Carlin, Nevada.
The deposit was discovered by Union Carbide Corp. in the 1960s via 127 rotary drill holes. First Vanadium is now aiming to fast track the project in a bid to unlock its value.