Drilling at Lake Resources’ (ASX: LKE) flagship Kachi project in Argentina’s famed lithium triangle continued to strengthen previous assay results and indicates that lithium brines extend beyond the limits of the current resource .
The company said continued similar results could support a doubling of planned future production targeting 50,000 tonnes per year of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE).
Lake has already committed to expanding its drill footprint next year with plans to upgrade and expand the sizeable 4.4 million tonne LCE resource, where 1 Mt is indicated and 3.4 Mt inferred.
The expansion will support the completion of a definitive feasibility study and final investment decision for the project.
New infill drilling is also being designed to facilitate the conversion of inferred resources to the measured and indicated category and allow for a production expansion study targeting 50,000 tpa LCE.
A 1,200 meter, four-hole diamond program is currently underway and may be extended pending initial results.
A water well rig completed three wells exploring process water options while a third rig completed pre-collar holes and pumped brine samples.
A fourth rig is planned for drilling production wells in the new year.
Scale and potential
Lake general manager Steve Promnitz said Kachi has considerable scale and potential for growth.
“Argentina continues to be one of the few places where lithium production can increase to fill the large gap between supply and growing demand,” he said.
“[We are] one of the few companies that can transform into a globally significant producer and deliver high-purity lithium carbonate at scale with significant environmental, social and governance (ESG) benefits.
Lake executives received backing for the project during recent talks with export credit agencies and international banks in London.
“Benchmark Mineral Intelligence noted lithium demand is growing at three times the rate of new supply,” Promnitz said.
“Our environmentally sustainable project is coming to market at the right time, with equity and debt backing and a growing list of potential buyers.”
The Kachi Project occupies a prime location within the Lithium Triangle, which spans the borders of Argentina, Bolivia and Chile to form a geographic “triangle” of lithium resources beneath the country’s vast salt flats.
The region is responsible for producing around 40% of the world’s least-cost lithium supply.
Lake has over 2,200 square kilometers of claims, including a hard rock project in the triangle, and Kachi comprises 740 square kilometers of this area.