Rare Earth Clay Projects
The Mata da Corda and the Campo Grande projects combined, provide Equinox Resources with an impressive ~2550 km2 exploration footprint in this rapidly developing Ionic Rare Earth Clay regions.
These two applications follow on from an extensive research and analysis program of the potential of the region and support the continued growth and development of Equinox Resources as a diversified global resources company. It is a strategic move that positions Equinox as an emerging leader in the global rare earths clay sector, a key industry for the progression of technology and sustainable energy solutions.
Campo Grande project application comprises ~1,760km2 of Rare Earth tenements in Bahia State, north-east Brazil, with compelling potential for ionic clay-hosted rare earths deposits.
Mata da Corda project application comprises ~850km2 of tenements with compelling potential for ionic clay-hosted rare earths deposits in the State of Minas Gerais, in Patos de Minas, Brazil.
Exploration planning is already underway, and as soon as the tenements are granted as expected in the first quarter of 2024, Equinox will be ready to implement plans and start exploration and drilling at the Mata da Corda and Campo Grande Projects.
Supportive local government royalty initiatives, pro-mining sentiment of local workforce and established infrastructure contribute to the attraction of these under-explored regions.
Mata da Corda Project overview
The Mata da Corda Group, located in the Arco do Alto Paranaíba region, has been identified as a prime location for exploration for rare earth clay elements due to its unique geological composition and extensive size of approximately 2,200km2. This area is distinguished by its kamafugitic rocks, which include a variety of formations such as subvolcanic plugs, volcanic flows, and pyroclastic deposits, indicating a rich and diverse geological history.
The region’s soil is predominantly clayey and rich in iron, making it highly fertile. This is further enhanced by the presence of laterite crusts, which are known for their mineral content. The geological activity in the area, characterised by multiple volcanic pulses, has resulted in layers of pyroclastic materials like tuffs and lapillites, which are often associated with rare earth element deposits.
The Ministry of Mines and Energy’s Geological Service of Brazil (CPRM) carried out the geological survey of potential areas in Brazil for strategic REE minerals and identified Mata da Corda region as significantly prospective for REE exploration. It identified the presence of minerals such as fluorapatite, gorceixite, and wavellite in altered kamafugite rocks, along with titanomagnetite and anatase, points to a concentration of valuable elements including phosphorus, iron, titanium, and rare earth elements (Takehara, 2015)1.
According to the CPRM assessment report (Takehara, 2015), the Mata da Corda Group is delimited by magnetometric (high magnetic susceptibility related to the extrusive body) and gamma spectrometric (high weathering related to soils and superficial laterite crust) geophysical anomalies. Equinox carried out desk top assessment of the area including re-interpretation of the available government geophysical data.
The tenements were selected based on the available mafic index and lateritic weathering index data which was reclassification with the aim of identifying areas where high lateritic index and high mafic index values are observed. After reclassification, the known boundary of the Mata da Corda Group was superimposed. The area was selected based on the higher indicators of mafic rocks and laterite packages within the Mata da Corda Group.
Figure 2: Mata da Corda Region – Geology
The Campo Grande Project Overview
The Campo Grande Project is located approximately 250km southwest of Salvador, the capital of Bahia State in northeast Brazil. Equinox’s tenement applications are near Brazilian Rare Earths Limited’s (proposed ASX code: BRE) Rocha da Rocha Project, which covers a combined area of approximately 1,410km2 and hosts a JORC Resource Estimate of 510.3Mt at 1,513ppm TREO.
Equinox has the potential to become the largest tenement holding in this emerging rare earths province upon successful tenement application approval. The company will be positioned to lead in the discovery and development of these critical minerals and is committed to advancing the Campo Grande Project to deliver value to its stakeholders through exploration and development.
Figure 3: Equinox Resources Tenement relative to BRE Rocha da Rocha Project.