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Castle snares WA lithium ground

Junior explorer, Castle Minerals has put its foot on 242 square kilometres of ground prospective for lithium-bearing pegmatites in the Eastern Goldfields of Western Australia. The tenure is located within an area known as the “Western Australian lithium corridor” that hosts the operating Mt Marion lithium mine and the 26.5 million tonne Bald Hill resource grading 1.0 per cent lithium oxide only 25 kilometres away.

The new tenure consists of two adjoining licence applications forming the newly named ‘Woodcutters project’.

According to Castle, Woodcutters lies immediately north of ASX-listed Castillo Copper’s Picasso lithium project where historical mapping conducted by the Geological Survey of Western Australia detected pegmatite occurrences.

Castle says the pegmatites on Castillo’s ground appear to extend into its tenure with about 10km of a prospective pegmatite trend identified at Woodcutters .

There are no records of past exploration targeting lithium mineralisation at Woodcutters, according to management.

Curiously, historical auger gold drilling by Anglo Gold along a section of the Woodcutters tenure returned elevated lithium values from beneath a regolith cover. Castle is evaluating the drilling data as part of its targeting strategy at the project.

Woodcutters lies along strike and in the same pegmatite field as Bald Hill and the Buldania lithium deposit, some 25km south-west. ASX-listed Liontown Resources has defined a 14.9Mt resource going 0.97 lithium oxide at Buldania.

We are very pleased to have applied for open ground at Woodcutters in the renowned Western Australian lithium corridor which is also host to the Mt Marion and Bald Hill deposits.

The two applications, totalling 242km2, lie 25km southeast of the Bald Hill lithium-tantalum mine and encompass some 10km of the same prospective belt where GSWA mapping has confirmed the presence of numerous pegmatites but where it did not specifically sample for lithium.

What is encouraging is there are elevated levels of lithium recorded in multi-element geochemical data obtained from regolith sampling during exploration for gold in 2011.

Castle now plans to conduct a first-pass site visit to the project prior to more thorough mapping and rock chip sampling of outcropping pegmatites at Woodcutters.

The company will also look to validate historical lithium occurrences reported at the tenure by Anglo Gold, with aircore drilling below the regolith cover also potentially on the cards. It says an intensive RC drilling campaign may follow.

Woodcutters adds to the Castle’s growing portfolio of exploration projects prospective for metals critical to the burgeoning lithium-ion battery industry.

It recently applied for an exploration licence, named the ‘Wilgee Springs lithium project’, along strike to the Greenbushes lithium mine in the south-west of Western Australia.

According to Castle, Greenbushes takes in a whopping 178.5Mt resource at 2.0 per cent lithium oxide with the mining operation supplying about 21 per cent of the world’s lithium.

In Ghana, the company has defined a 14.4Mt resource grading 7.2 per cent total graphitic carbon at its Kambale project.

The Woodcutters acquisition appears to add further weight to Castle’s strategy of becoming an explorer focused on making discoveries for the critical battery metals industry.

Is your ASX-listed company doing something interesting? Contact: matt.birney@wanews.com.au

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