Resource and Exploration

Mineral Resource
The Total Mineral Resource at the Project is now estimated at 9.26 Mt @ 0.67% total rare earth oxides (TREO) comprising 62,189,000kg contained TREO using a cut-off grade of 0.15% TREO (classified and reported according to the guidelines of the 2012 JORC Code). The Mineral Resource comprises of seven deposits; Wolverine, Gambit, Gambit West, Area 5, Cyclops, Banshee and Dazzler, plus the mined Pilot Plant Stockpiles.

At the Wolverine deposit the total Mineral Resource is estimated at 4.85 million tonnes @ 0.86% TREO comprising 41,876 tonnes TREO using a cut-off grade of 0.15% TREO. Of the Total Mineral Resource, 52% is classified as Indicated Resource, with the remainder in the Inferred Resource category.

Since announcing its maiden Mineral Resource estimate of 10,500 tonnes TREO in 2012, Northern Minerals has increased the total contained TREO more than fivefold by 51,689 tonnes. The Dazzler deposit was the most recent discovery in 2018 and is the second largest deposit and the highest-grade deposit (average grade of 2.33% TREO).

The deposits can mostly be characterised as breccia-or quartz vein hosted hydrothermal systems with the dominant mineralisation being the rare earth phosphate mineral xenotime; a rich source of dysprosium and other high value HREs. The mineralisation at Browns Range has a high heavy rare earth oxide (HREO) proportion to the total rare earth oxide (TREO), being 87% for the Total Mineral Resource and ranging from 69% at Area 5 up to 96% at Gambit.

Ore Reserve

An updated Ore Reserve for the Project of 3.29Mt of ore containing 1,948,000kg dysprosium and 22,339,000kg Total Rare Earth Oxide (TREO) was achieved in September 2018. The Ore Reserve is classified as 100% Probable and is reported in accordance with the JORC Code 2012.

The Probable Ore Reserve is outlined in Table 2 below and reported according to the JORC (2012) Code and Guidelines in ASX announcement “Increased Ore Reserve for Browns Range Project – 28 September 2018”.

The JORC compliant Probable Ore Reserve is based on the current Mineral Resource, as released, in accordance with the JORC 2012 Code, by Northern Minerals.

The Mineral Resource is inclusive of the Ore Reserves.

Competent Persons Declaration and Compliance Statements

The information in this document that relates to the Mineral Resource Estimates of the Wolverine, Gambit, Gambit West, Area 5, Cyclops, Banshee deposits and Pilot Plant Stockpiles is extracted from the Company’s ASX Announcement dated 28 September 2018 entitled “Mineral Resource and Ore Reserve Update – Post Trial Mining Operations at June 30 2018” available to view on the Company’s website (www.northernminerals.com.au) and www.asx.com.au, and was completed in accordance with the guidelines of the JORC Code (2012). The Company confirms that it is not aware of any new information or data that materially affects the information included in the original market announcement and that all material assumptions and technical parameters underpinning the Mineral Resource Estimates in the relevant market announcement continue to apply and have not materially changed. The Company confirms that the form and context in which the Competent Person’s findings are presented have not been materially modified from the original market announcement.

The information in this document that relates to the Mineral Resource Estimate for the Dazzler deposit is extracted from the Company’s ASX Announcement dated 7 May 2020 entitled “Over 50% increase in Dazzler high-grade mineral resource” available to view on the Company’s website (www.northernminerals.com.au) and www.asx.com.au, and was completed in accordance with the guidelines of the JORC Code (2012). The Company confirms that it is not aware of any new information or data that materially affects the information included in the original market announcement and that all material assumptions and technical parameters underpinning the Mineral Resource Estimates in the relevant market announcement continue to apply and have not materially changed. The Company confirms that the form and context in which the Competent Person’s findings are presented have not been materially modified from the original market announcement.

The information in this document that relates to Ore Reserves is extracted from the Company’s ASX Announcement dated 28 September 2018 entitled “Mineral Resource and Ore Reserve Update – Post Trial Mining Operations at June 30 2018” available to view on the Company’s website (www.northernminerals.com.au) and www.asx.com.au, and was completed in accordance with the guidelines of the JORC Code (2012). The Company confirms that it is not aware of any new information or data that materially affects the information included in the original market announcement and that all material assumptions and technical parameters underpinning the Ore Reserves Estimates in the relevant market announcement continue to apply and have not materially changed. The Company confirms that the form and context in which the Competent Person’s findings are presented have not been materially modified from the original market announcement.

Exploration

Northern Minerals’ tenure around the Browns Range Project covers an area of approximately 2,280km2 and is centred on the Browns Range Dome, a major geological feature covering approximately 1,500km2. The Dome is located in the northern Tanami region, within both Western Australia (WA) and the Northern Territory (NT).

This large landholding is highly prospective for heavy rare earth (HRE) mineralisation with outstanding potential for further discoveries. Northern Minerals’ exploration success to date has been exceptional, with seven targets converted to mineral resources and many more highly prospective targets identified, some of which have yet to be drilled.

Northern Minerals has 100% ownership and marketing rights for all tenements covering the WA portion of the Browns Range Dome. For most of the tenure over the NT portion of the Dome, Northern Minerals has 100% rare earth rights, and for the remainder the tenure is held 100% by Northern Minerals.

Since 2009, exploration by the Company has been focused on the WA tenements, which has led to the discovery and completion of Mineral Resource estimates at Wolverine, Gambit West, Gambit, Area 5, Cyclops, Banshee and Dazzler (see Mineral Resources page). From these deposits Wolverine, Gambit West, Gambit and Area 5 all have Ore Reserve estimates.

All six of the current JORC compliant Mineral Resources remain either open at depth or along strike, indicating further potential to increase the current Mineral Resources. Additional drilling has only been limited by funding, with each deposit flagged for further drilling as a key strategy to increase the Browns Range Project’s mine life. However, the exploration priority is to discover new high-grade, near-surface deposits.

Targeting work within the WA tenements has included geochemical soil sampling, airborne and ground geophysical surveys (radiometrics and gravity), regional mapping and geomechanical modelling. This has resulted in several targets being defined some of which require further on-ground follow-up and possible drilling. Most of these targets are within the Archean Browns Range Metamorphics (dominantly arkosic and clastic sandstones). A drilling program at the Dazzler prospect in 2018 targeting the regional unconformity between the younger Gardiner Sandstone and the underlying Browns Range Metamorphics, intersected high-grade HRE mineralization. The Dazzler deposit is now the highest grade HRE deposit at Browns Range. There is significant potential within the Project area to target further areas where mineralizing structures intersect the unconformity, such as at Dazzler. These target types will be the focus of exploration going forward particularly along the southern margin of the Dome.

 

The WA tenements cover only 29% of the company’s landholding over the Browns Range Dome, with the remainder in the NT. Very limited early stage exploration has been completed to date on the NT side of the Browns Range Dome, with airborne geophysical surveys, reconnaissance geological mapping and geochemical soil and rock chip sampling. Future work programs will focus on defining drill targets, particularly those adjacent to the Gardiner Sandstone unconformity.

Competent persons statement

The information in this report relating to Exploration Results was compiled by Mr Robin Wilson who is a Member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy. Mr Wilson is a full time employee of Northern Minerals Limited and has sufficient experience relevant to the style of mineralisation and type of deposit under consideration and to the activity which he is undertaking to qualify as a Competent Person as defined in the 2012 Edition of the ‘Australasian Code for Reporting of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves’ (the JORC Code). Mr Wilson consents to the inclusion of this information in the form and context in which it appears.

¹TREO = Total Rare Earth Oxides – La2O3, CeO2, Pr6O11, Nd2O3, Sm2O3, Eu2O3, Gd2O3, Tb4O7, Dy2O3, Ho2O3, Er2O3, Tm2O3, Yb2O3, Lu2O3, Y2O3
²HREO = Heavy Rare Earth Oxides – Total of Sm2O3, Eu2O3, Gd2O3, Tb4O7, Dy2O3, Ho2O3, Er2O3, Tm2O3, Yb2O3, Lu2O3, Y2O3