Mr. Steve Cochrane reports
LITHIUM CHILE PROVIDES OPERATIONAL UPDATE ON THE PHASE TWO DRILLING PROGRAM ON ITS SALAR DE ARIZARO PROJECT LOCATED IN SALTA PROVINCE, ARGENTINA
Lithium Chile Inc.'s phase 2 drilling program, designed to expand the company's previously announced 1.42 million metric tonnes of lithium carbonate resource, has commenced.
The first of two diamond drill rigs contracted was mobilized to the Salar de Arizaro on June 28 such that drilling of the first of four exploration holes is now under way. Currently drilling though the halite cap, it is anticipated that the target zone identified in Lithium Chile's recently completed pump test well will be entered within 10 days. While these holes are not designed to be production holes, they will provide the company with valuable data such as porosity, grades and structural characteristics of the formation. It is anticipated that each of these exploration holes will take 45 days to complete. Samples will be taken throughout the drilling program with results being announced as they are received. One goal of these exploration holes is to increase the company's knowledge of the deposit. However, by successfully expanding the known arial extent of lithium-bearing brines in the Salar de Arizaro, the company expects that a material upward revision to its resource estimate would follow.
The rotary rig contracted to drill the first freshwater well on the Salar de Arizaro was mobilized on June 22, 2022, such that drilling on the company's southernmost claims is also under way. It is anticipated that the water well will take three weeks to drill to a total depth of 120 metres. Freshwater is critical for the production of lithium carbonate whether using traditional evaporation methods or new direct lithium extraction (DLE) technologies. After completion of the water well, the larger rotary rig will move on to the company's larger central claim block and begin drilling the first of three planned production wells. These three production-capable wells are also designed to expand the company's initial resource estimate and provide the added benefit of accelerating the production potential of the Salar de Arizaro deposit.
Concurrent with the start of its drilling program, a mobile camp was built to accommodate the workers on site. The on-site camp will house the company's employees, which allows for non-stop operations and will significantly reduce the company's travel costs.
Steve Cochrane, president and chief executive officer, comments: "We are extremely excited to have the second phase of our Arizaro project under way. This program is designed to greatly enhance our initial resource numbers and expand the commercial potential of our Arizaro project. On top of this, our team's ability to not only acquire the personnel and equipment in these challenging times in Argentina, but to deploy them in such a timely manner gives me great confidence in our ability to execute our phase 2 plan."
About Lithium Chile
Lithium Chile is advancing a lithium property portfolio consisting of 79,700 hectares covering sections of 11 salars and two laguna complexes in Chile and 23,300 hectares in Argentina.
Lithium Chile also owns five properties, totalling 22,429 hectares that are prospective for gold, silver and copper. Exploration efforts are continuing on Lithium Chile's Carmona gold/silver/copper property which lies in the heart of the Chilean megaporphyry gold/silver/copper belt.
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