06:34:45 EDT Mon 03 Oct 2022
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Defense Metals Corp
Symbol DEFN
Shares Issued 183,374,601
Close 2022-08-09 C$ 0.205
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Defense Metals completes Wicheeda exploration drilling

2022-08-09 16:34 ET - News Release

Mr. Kristopher Raffle reports


Defense Metals Corp. has provided an update for its continuing diamond drilling at its Wicheeda rare earth element (REE) deposit. The 2022 resource infill and exploration diamond drill campaign is now complete, and pit slope geotechnical drilling is under way.

A total of 12 diamond drill holes totalling over 3,500 metres have been drilled to date within the northern and central areas of the Wicheeda rare earth element deposit preliminary economic assessment (PEA) mine plan ultimate pit area, with initial assay results from the earliest drill holes expected during September or October, 2022.

All materials, instrumentation and technical personnel have now been mobilized to site to commence geotechnical drilling for the purpose of open-pit slope design optimization. A total of five geotechnical drill holes targeting the north, west, south and east high walls of the Wicheeda PEA mine plan ultimate pit are planned. Data collection will include oriented drill core, field point load and laboratory-based intact rock and discontinuity strength testing, vibrating wire piezometer, and standpipe piezometer installation for hydrogeological investigations.

Kristopher Raffle, PGeo, director and qualified person of Defense Metals, commented, "Defense Metals is very pleased with the progress of the 2022 infill and exploration drilling to date, and we look forward to gathering important pit slope geotechnical data to support future Wicheeda REE deposit advanced economic studies."

Management site visit

Concurrent with the commencement of geotechnical investigations, Defense Metals' management has arranged for a Wicheeda field visit during the week of Aug. 15, 2022, to accompany strategic interested parties and capital market analysts.

About the Wicheeda REE property

The 100-per-cent-owned 4,244-hectare Wicheeda REE property, located approximately 80 kilometres northeast of the city of Prince George, B.C., is readily reachable by all-weather gravel roads, and is near infrastructure, including power transmission lines, the CN railway and major highways.

The Wicheeda REE project yielded a robust 2021 PEA that demonstrated an after-tax net present value (at 8 per cent) of $517-million and an 18-per-cent internal rate of return (1). A unique advantage of the Wicheeda REE project is the production of a saleable high-grade flotation concentrate. The PEA contemplates a 1.8-million-tonne-per-year mill throughput open-pit mining operation with a 1.75 to 1 (waste to mill feed) strip ratio over a 19-year mine (project) life, producing an average of 25,423 tonnes rare earth oxides annually. A phase 1 initial pit strip ratio of 0.63 to 1 (waste to mill feed) would yield rapid access to higher-grade surface mineralization in year one and payback of $440-million initial capital within five years.

(1) An independent preliminary economic assessment for the Wicheeda rare earth element project, British Columbia, Canada, dated Jan. 6, 2022, with an effective date of Nov. 7, 2021, and prepared by SRK Consulting (Canada) Inc., is filed under Defense Metals' issuer profile on SEDAR.

Qualified person

The scientific and technical information contained in this news release as it relates to the Wicheeda REE project has been reviewed and approved by Kristopher J. Raffle, PGeo (British Columbia), principal and consultant of Apex Geoscience Ltd. of Edmonton, Alta., a director of Defense Metals, a qualified person as defined in National Instrument 43-101. Mr. Raffle verified the data disclosed, which include a review of the sampling, analytical and test data underlying the information and opinions contained therein.

About Defense Metals Corp.

Defense Metals is a mineral exploration and development company focused on the acquisition, exploration and development of mineral deposits containing metals and elements commonly used in the electric power market, defence industry, national security sector and the production of green energy technologies, such as: rare earth magnets used in wind turbines and permanent magnet motors for electric vehicles. Defense Metals owns 100 per cent of the Wicheeda rare earth element property located near Prince George, B.C., Canada. Defense Metals trades in Canada under the symbol DEFN on the TSX Venture Exchange, in the United States under DFMTF on the OTCQB and in Germany on the Frankfurt Exchange under 35D.

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