Mr. John Theobald reports
I-MINERALS OPERATIONS UPDATE
I-Minerals Inc. has provided a status update on its continuing halloysite and metakaolin project and prefeasibility study. Pilot plant production of halloysite and clay at Ginn Mineral Technologies (GMT) is nearing completion. As noted in the company's press release of Jan. 15, 2019, 60 tons of primary clay were shipped to GMT for processing. Once all the product is dried, a total of approximately five tons of halloysite and six tons of kaolin is expected.
The kaolin will be sent to FLSmidth in Allentown, Pa., for flash calcination to produce metakaolin. Once calcined, the metakaolin will be sent for milling and testing to confirm previous results. Metakaolin previously produced at bench scale utilizing a similar flow sheet generated very good ASTM C618 results for water demand and strength activity index.
The current pilot plant has also produced the two halloysite products: HalloPure (approximately 75 per cent halloysite and 25 per cent kaolinite) and Ultra HalloPure (95 per cent halloysite and 5 per cent kaolinite). Some of the HalloPure has been sent for further processing to make an air/gas filtration product. Previous testing in Germany by Durtec GmbH demonstrated strong results in a biogas filtration application. Initial testing of the filtration halloysite product will be for odour control and other applications in conjunction with a major licensed cannabis producer.
The prefeasibility study being undertaken by Millcreek Engineering of Salt Lake City, Utah, for an operation capable of producing up to 10,000 tons per year of halloysite and 20,000 tons per year of metakaolin is currently about 60 per cent complete. At this stage production of highly beneficiated k-feldspar and quartz is not envisaged but the operation may produce a feldspathic sand which will be screened and sold into various markets. The option remains for some production of high-quality k-feldspar and quartz in the future should market conditions allow.
The mine plan is being amended to focus on areas of the resource with higher halloysite and kaolin content. Preliminary estimations suggest a material improvement in grade is achievable while still defining an initial over 20-year mine life. The combination of higher-grade material and smaller pits is expected to have a positive impact on mining costs.
"We are encouraged by the developments to date on the halloysite and metakaolin prefeasibility study," stated John Theobald, president and chief executive officer of I-Minerals. "Our aim is to develop a lower capital cost project bringing exceptional-quality halloysite products into the U.S.A. and international markets, and to be the only producer of high-quality metakaolin in the west of the U.S.A."
A. Lamar Long, CPG, is a qualified person for I-Minerals, and has reviewed and approved the contents of this release.
About I-Minerals Inc.
I-Minerals is a Canadian-based exploration and development company that is advancing the Helmer-Bovill kaolin-halloysite-quartz-potassium feldspar property in north-central Idaho.
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