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Mason Graphite Inc
Symbol C : LLG
Shares Issued 66,785,283
Close 2013-12-04 C$ 0.39
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Mason releases NI 43-101 Lac Gueret resource estimate

2013-12-05 11:45 ET - News Release

Mr. Benoit Gascon reports

MASON GRAPHITE REPORTS 658% INCREASE IN MEASURED AND INDICATED MINERAL RESOURCES TO 50 MILLION TONNES, INCLUDING 6.7 MILLION TONNES GRADING 32.4% CG

Mason Graphite Inc. has released an updated mineral resource estimate for its 100-per-cent-owned Lac Gueret graphite project in northeastern Quebec.

Highlights from the updated mineral resource estimate

  • Measured and indicated (M&I) mineral resources increased 658 per cent from 7.6 million tonnes to 50 million tonnes.
  • Inferred mineral resources increased from 2.8 million tonnes to 11.9 million tonnes.
  • Overall M&I grade is 15.6 per cent graphite (Cg); the main parameters of the preliminary economic assessment for the Lac Gueret project are still valid: 22 years of production at 27.4 per cent with a low stripping ratio at 0.76 to 1 and low operating costs at $390/tonne.
  • The enlarged mineral resource could lead to an optimized pit design and improved economics.

Large increase in mineral resources

The new mineral resource estimate, as calculated by Roche Ltd. Consulting Group, includes assay data from 170 holes (approximately 26,500 metres) drilled in the GC zone and now totals 50,024,000 tonnes grading 15.6 per cent Cg, including 6,672,000 tonnes grading 32.4 per cent Cg, in the measured and indicated categories, and 11,861,000 tonnes grading 17.1 per cent Cg, including 2,637,000 tonnes grading 30.5 per cent Cg, in the inferred category. The enlarged mineral resource envelope offers opportunities to further optimize the mine plan and the project's economics as set out in the PEA in the next phase of technical studies.

"We are very pleased to see the success of our 2012 drilling program materialize in this updated mineral resource estimate," commented Benoit Gascon, president and chief executive officer of Mason Graphite. "We expect the scale of growth of our project to positively impact what is already expected to be an economical project. Results from the Lac Gueret project continue to reinforce our belief in the world-class potential of this asset."

       UPDATED MINERAL RESOURCE ESTIMATE, GC ZONE

Categories                  Unit        Tonnes  Cg grade
                                                      (%)

Measured     U1/U2 (5 to 25 % Cg)    4,052,000      13.4
                   U3 (> 25 % Cg)      465,000      33.8
                       All units     4,517,000      15.5
Indicated    U1/U2 (5 to 25 % Cg)   39,300,000      13.0
                   U3 (> 25 % Cg)    6,207,000      32.3
                       All units    45,507,000      15.6
M+I          U1/U2 (5 to 25 % Cg)   43,352,000      13.0
                   U3 (> 25 % Cg)    6,672,000      32.4
                       All units    50,024,000      15.6
Inferred     U1/U2 (5 to 25 % Cg)    9,224,000      13.3
                   U3 (> 25 % Cg)    2,637,000      30.5
                       All units    11,861,000      17.1

A cut-off grade of 5 per cent graphite was used for this
mineral resource estimate.

Excellent PEA results maintained

On April 22, 2013, Mason Graphite reported positive results in the PEA for the Lac Gueret project, which included 22 years of production at 27.4 per cent Cg considering a strip ratio of 0.76 to 1 and operating costs of $390 per tonne. This technical study used data from the previous July, 2012, mineral resource estimate, which covers only a small portion of the updated mineral resource area.

The block model that was created for the mineral resource update was provided to Met-Chem Canada Inc., the firm responsible for the completion of the PEA. Met-Chem was able to verify and confirm that conclusions of the PEA are still relevant and valid for the updated model.

The company expects the scale and grade of the new mineral resource to positively affect the project economics in the next phase of technical studies.

An updated National Instrument 43-101 technical report outlining the procedures for estimation of the mineral resource estimate presented herein will be filed on SEDAR within 45 days of the date of this press release.

Future mineral growth potential

The new mineral resource estimate is based on drill data from the GC zone, which represents only one of two mineralized zones identified on the Lac Gueret property to date.

GC zone

A total of 170 holes totalling approximately 26,500 metres have been drilled in this area. The GC zone has a strike length of approximately 1.2 kilometres and the new mineral resource estimate has almost doubled the width of the deposit to about 600 metres. The mineral envelope remains open in all directions and the company expects further growth with additional drilling.

GR zone

To date, only 18 holes totalling approximately 2,300 metres have been drilled in this zone, which is located less than one kilometre north of the GC zone. The GR zone is currently defined on an area spanning about one kilometre by 110 metres.

Mineral resource estimation methodology

The mineral resource estimation for the GC zone is based on geological observations and geochemical data modelization involving the following rock subdivisions: unit 1 is defined by a content of 5 per cent to 10 per cent Cg; unit 2 by 10 per cent to 25 per cent Cg; and unit 3 by 25 per cent Cg or more. Waste has less than 5 per cent Cg. Units 1 and 2, appearing similar in texture, have been regrouped during the interpretation. Unit 2 now ranges from 5 per cent to 25 per cent Cg.

The GC zone database includes four channel-sampled trenches (approximately 900 metres) in addition to 170 NQ-size diamond core holes drilled prior to Dec. 15, 2012 (approximately 26,500 m) for a total of 18,182 samples.

Resources were classified as measured, indicated or inferred based on information spacing and the confidence to the geological continuity of mineralization in accordance to the CIM guidelines. Only material located within a pit shell generated from an optimized mining scenario run under Whittle software is included in this mineral resources estimate. This scenario is assuming an overall pit slope of 45 degrees, an operating cost of $69.00 (U.S.) per tonne milled (including mining and milling costs), a 100-per-cent mining recovery, no mining dilution and a conservative selling price of $1,525 (U.S.)/tonne of concentrate at 93.7 per cent Cg.

Drill holes cross-sections and plan views were interpreted to construct 3-D wireframe models using the geochemical analyses and geological descriptive logs with a nominal cut-off of 5 per cent Cg under GEMS software. No capping value was applied to the assays. Assay intervals were composited to three m lengths from the raw Cg assay values and grades were estimated using ordinary kriging. Search ellipsoids were defined in a plane that parallels the average bedding trend characterized by an azimuth of 50 degrees and a plunge of 40 degrees. Anisotropy was interpreted in semi-variogram and set to 60 m along the X axis, 40 m along the Y and 50 meters along the Z axis. The block model was defined by block size of three m long by three m wide by three m thick, rotated 40 degrees counter-clockwise in alignment to the main geological trend over a total of 425 columns, 265 rows and 110 level, and covers a strike length of 960 m to a maximal depth of 253 m below the highest surface point. The final mineral resources which are located inside the optimized pit reach 205 m below surface (maximum depth of optimized pit). From unit types, the following densities were assigned to the blocks: U1 to U2 (5 per cent to 25 per cent Cg) equals 2.94 grams/cubic centimetres; U3 (greater than 25 per cent Cg) equals 2.88 g/cubic cm; and waste (0 per cent to 5 per cent Cg) equals 2.92 g/cubic cm.

The zone remains open in length and at depth.

Conference call details

A conference call will be hosted today, Dec. 5, 2013, at 2 p.m. ET, by the senior management of the company to discuss the new mineral resource estimate.

The dial-in numbers are 1-416-340-2216 (Toronto and international) and 1-866-223-7781 (North American toll-free).

There will be a replay of this call, which will last until end of day on Dec. 12, 2013. The replay call-in numbers are 905-694-9451 (Toronto and international) or 800-408-3053 (North American toll-free). The conference ID 2808861 will serve as the password for the replay.

Quality assurance/quality control

Analyses for this drilling campaign were carried out by AGAT Laboratories Ltd. in Mississauga, Ont., a company independent from Mason Graphite, exercising a thorough QA/QC program with Mason Graphite personnel inserting one blank, two standards and one duplicate every 100 samples. AGAT Laboratories is accredited ISO/IEC 17025 by the Standards Council of Canada (SCC). Carbon as graphite (Cg) assays reported in this press release were obtained by using the LECO analytical technique ASTM E1915-07A with a detection limit of 0.01 per cent Cg. Drill holes were sampled over an average of 1.5 m intervals.

Control analyses were performed by Consortium de Recherche Appliquee en Traitement et Transformation des Substances Minerales (COREM) of Quebec City.

Qualified persons

The resource estimate was prepared by Roche, a company independent from Mason Graphite. Edwards Lyons, PGeo, from Tekhne Research, and Martin Perron, from Roche, are independent qualified persons as defined by National Instrument 43-101. Mr. Lyons and Mr. Perron have reviewed and approved the technical information pertaining to the mineral resource estimate in this news release.

Mary-Jean Buchanan, Eng, MEnv, of Met-Chem Canada, an independent qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101, has reviewed and approved the technical information pertaining to the PEA in this news release.

Yves Caron, PGeo, MSc, director of geology and exploration for Mason Graphite, and Jean L'Heureux, Eng, Mason Graphite's executive vice-president of process development, both qualified persons as defined by National Instrument 43-101, have reviewed and approved the scientific and technical content of this press release.

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