Technical Update: Continued Beneficiation Success Brings Optionality to the Kvanefjeld Project

Top Quote Greenland Minerals and Energy Ltd ("GMEL" or "the Company") is pleased to provide an update on the latest metallurgical developments regarding beneficiation, and the positive implications for the Kvanefjeld multi-element project (Rare Earth Elements, Uranium, zinc). End Quote
  • (1888PressRelease) August 14, 2012 - Following an extensive laboratory development program GMEL is nearing the end of metallurgical development of a beneficiation process to produce a high-grade mineral concentrate. Beneficiation development was aggressively initiated in September 2010 and has resulted in a well-tested process utilizing commercially established froth flotation.

    The flotation process is able to concentrate 82% of the Rare Earth Elements in 8.5% (mass pull) of the original ore mass. This effectively increases the in-ground ore grade from notionally 1.2% REO to 12% REO in concentrate. In addition to concentrating the rare earth elements, uranium is concentrated to a grade of approximately 0.2% U3O8. Financial analysis indicates there is an economic optimum for the project within a mass pull range of 8-10%.

    The high upgrade for the ore is made possible by the favorable mineralogy. The ore minerals are unusual, but increasingly recognized as highly advantageous in that they can be beneficiated effectively, and are amenable to leaching under atmospheric conditions without costly high-temperature mineral cracking. The ores allow for a grind size of 75-100 microns (80% passing size) to be utilized with no de-sliming required.

    The design for the Kvanefjeld flotation circuit is simple relative to base metal flotation and flotation circuits of other rare earth projects, with a small number of stages required. Most of the zinc can be removed from the rare earth-uranium mineral concentrate with a pre-float stage to produce a high-grade zinc concentrate. The ore is conditioned with the use of two reagents; a collector and a dispersant. Fast flotation kinetics allow for the use of flotation equipment which produce final concentrate from the first flotation stage. A scavenger flotation stage is used to collect the remaining concentrate which is cleaned to produce additional final concentrate.
    Advantages for Greenland Minerals and Energy

    The ability to produce a high-grade concentrate brings both cost advantages and optionality to the Kvanefjeld project. The ability to reduce the mass of material treated by a high-cost rare earth hydrometallurgical refinery has significant cost advantages. Both the capital and operating cost are greatly reduced by treating a high-grade mineral concentrate rather than whole of ore.

    Processing of the Kvanefjeld ores requires two main steps; beneficiation, followed by hydrometallurgical leaching. In studies to date, GMEL has evaluated conducting both steps in Greenland. Whilst the beneficiation step must take place in close proximity to the ore deposits, the significant grade increase and mass reduction achieved through beneficiation open the option to ship the concentrates to conduct the leaching step outside of Greenland.

    Initial studies to evaluate the transport costs of the Kvanefjeld mineral concentrates indicate that it represents approximately 5% of the contained value. This is in-line with the transport costs of base metal flotation concentrates, which are commonly shipped elsewhere for refining. Notionally, this provides strong confidence in the viability of shipping flotation concentrates from Kvanefjeld. The company is currently conducting studies to investigate the benefits of establishing a hydrometallurgical refinery closer to markets in a lower cost environment. The outcomes can be compared against the costs and logistics established for a base-case hydrometallurgical plant in Greenland.

    GMEL sees a number of potential benefits to establishing only the concentrator (beneficiation stage) in Greenland. Firstly, infrastructure requirements in Greenland and associated costs will be reduced substantially. Secondly, it provides greater flexibility in structuring development and investment scenarios with strategic partners.

    The Kvanefjeld concentrates are strategic in that they are rich in the high-value heavy rare earth elements. Importantly, the concentrates can be leached under atmospheric conditions without costly, high temperature mineral cracking stages.
    To read the full ASX announcement go to: (

    Greenland Minerals and Energy Ltd (ASX - GGG) is an exploration and development company focused on developing high-quality mineral projects in Greenland. The Company's flagship project is the Kvanefjeld multi-element deposit (Rare Earth Elements, Uranium, Zinc), that is rapidly emerging as a premier specialty metals project. An interim report on pre-feasibility studies has demonstrated the potential for a large-scale multi-element mining operation. For further information on Greenland Minerals and Energy visit or contact:

    Roderick McIllree
    Managing Director
    +61 8 9382 2322

    Greenland Minerals and Energy Ltd will continue to advance the Kvanefjeld project in a manner that is in accord with both Greenlandic Government and local community expectations, and looks forward to being part of continued community discussions on the social and economic benefits associated with the development of the Kvanefjeld project.

    The information in this report that relates to exploration targets, exploration results, geological interpretations, appropriateness of cut-off grades, and reasonable expectation of potential viability of quoted rare earth element, uranium, and zinc resources is based on information compiled by Mr Jeremy Whybrow. Mr Whybrow is a director of the Company and a Member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM). Mr Whybrow has sufficient experience relevant to the style of mineralisation and type of deposit under consideration and to the activity which he is undertaking to qualify as a Competent Person as defined by the 2004 edition of the "Australasian Code for Reporting of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves". Mr Whybrow consents to the reporting of this information in the form and context in which it appears.

    The geological model and geostatistical estimation for the Kvanefjeld and Zone 2 deposits were prepared by Robin Simpson of SRK Consulting. Mr Simpson is a Member of the Australian Institute of Geoscientists (AIG), and has sufficient experience relevant to the style of mineralisation and type of deposit under consideration and to the activity which he is undertaking to qualify as a Competent Person as defined by the 2004 edition of the "Australasian Code for Reporting of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves". Mr Simpson consents to the reporting of information relating to the geological model and geostatistical estimation in the form and context in which it appears.

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