New mineral sands deposits uncovered

Sheffield Resources have announced four new minerals sands discoveries in Western Australia.

First-pass aircore drilling has revealed the new deposits in the 100 per cent owned Eneabba Mineral Sands Project contain up to 36 per cent combined rutile and zircon.

The dunal mineral deposits, named Robbs Cross, Thomson, Ding Road and Mt Adams, have been located to the east of Gingin Scarp in the state's mid-west, at a topographic feature representing a former coastal cliff.

Sheffield managing director Bruce McQuitty said the discoveries represented a new frontier for exploration in the Eneabba mining district.

"The dunal style of heavy mineral deposit we are targeting has many favourable characteristics for mining, including a high value mineral assemblage and favourable deposit geometry with little or no overburden," he said.

"We are confident the region will yield further discoveries, enabling us to build on our existing high grade Eneabba resource base of 4.5Mt of contained valuable heavy mineral."

Sheffield already have several resources in the area, which wil mean the new discoveries may be supported by a standalone operation.

Currently Sheffield have a combined 172Mt of material at an average grade of 3 per cent heavy mineral, comprised of 12 per cent zircon, 6.5 per cent Rutile, 63 per cent ilmenite, and 3.8 per cent Leucoxene.

The company said dunal deposits in the region have recieved little exploration attention, despite other recent nearby mining operations such as Iluka Resources' Twin Hills deposit in 2012 and 2013, which had a probable reserve of 19.9Mt at 3.2 per cent HM.

Sheffield has also expanded its total tenement holding in the area to 862 square kilometres, and has applications for three new exploration licences, as well as full coverage of 70 kilometres of the new prospective corridor east of Gingin Scarp. 

The company won Australian Mining's Explorer of the Year at the 2013 Prospect awards for its Dampier heavy mineral sands project.

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