On July 7, 2021 Manganese X (MN.V) announced the first Mineral Resource Estimate for its Battery Hill Manganese Project.
- 34.86 million tonnes of Measured and Indicated Resources grading 6.42% Mn; plus
- 25.91 million tonnes of Inferred Resources grading 6.66% Mn
Equity Guru jumped on the July 7, 2021 6:30 a.m. Emerging Growth Conference call with the CEO Martin Kepman. Edited remarks from that call are published below, but first let’s zoom out and review why manganese is such a hot commodity in today’s electrified world.
“Manganese is beginning to play a critical role in the evolution of new off-grid power storage systems, and cutting edge solar energy (storage) technologies,” wrote Equity Guru’s Greg Nolan on September 2, 2020.
“Joe Biden calls climate change an existential threat to America’s environment, health, national security and economy,” recounts The Conversation.
After becoming President, Biden immediately brought the U.S. back into the Paris Climate Agreement.”
These sweeping political and technological changes create a tail-wind for Manganese X shareholders.
“A US$174-billion U.S. plan to spur domestic production and sales of U.S.-made electric vehicles while bolstering domestic supply chains, from raw materials to parts, dovetails with allies Canada and Australia’s ambitions to become leading suppliers of raw materials.” reports The Financial Post.
“Graphite, manganese, aluminum and copper will be gobbled up by the boatload in a fully electric America, requiring all allies on deck to keep the nation’s battery and motor factories turning,” added The Post.
Resource Estimate Highlights:
- The mineral resource estimate utilizes a 2.5% Mn cut-off grade that reflects total operating costs having “reasonable prospects for economic extraction.”
- Operating costs applied in the pit optimization reflect an innovative processing flow sheet designed by Kemetco Research.
- Kemetco will be applying for a Provisional Patent on behalf of the Company to protect this process. The process focuses on production of 99.95 % High-Purity Manganese Sulphate Monohydrate (HPMSM) for the electric vehicle (EV) and back up energy storage sectors. The HPMSM will be devoid of selenium, the bane of some 98% of current producers.
- Based on the large inventory of Measured and Indicated mineral resources defined to date, MXE will move quickly to acquire all information required to bring the project to a Feasibility Study stage.
- Current focus is on the HPMSM market. The Company also anticipates potentially recovering lower grade Mn to produce additional products such as those used in the agricultural industry.
The July 7, 2021 press release reported that Battery Hill has 34.86 million tonnes of Measured and Indicated mineral resources grading 6.42% Mn, plus an additional 25.91 million tonnes of Inferred mineral resources grading 6.66% Mn.
Table 2: Tonnage/Grade Sensitivity Details (Pit Shell Constrained) for the Battery Hill Mn Deposit
“We look forward now to the completion by Wood Canada Ltd. of a Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) for the project that will incorporate this new mineral resource estimate plus the latest metallurgical developments to provide important insight into the economic viability of producing high purity manganese sulphate from our Battery Hill deposit,” stated Kepman.
A PEA answers the question, “How best can this deposit be exploited to maximize its profits for investors?” Unlike more advanced studies, a PEA can use inferred resources for its operational and financial modeling.
A positive PEA will typically create an upward re-valuation of the company, unless the spot price of the targeted mineral is plummeting – which is unlikely given the demand/supply ratio for Manganese.
“With a positive outcome from the PEA, there appears to be sufficient tonnage of Measured and Indicated mineral resources to potentially sustain long term production while we explore the potential of the other Mn mineralization on our 1228-hectare property,” added Kepman.
Over the last 5 years, MN drilling includes 53 holes totaling 9,697 metres over a deposit strike length of approximately 2.0 kilometres.
The associated mineral resources now defined form the basis of the PEA being prepared by Wood Canada Ltd.
The PEA will characterize and assess Commercialization and Economic Viability Potential for a future mining and processing operation at the Battery Hill Property.
The Battery Hill Deposit is comprised of the Moody Hill, Sharpe Farm, and Iron Ore Hill Zones. On a contained tonnage basis the Moody Hill, Sharpe Farm, and Iron Ore Hill Zones comprise approximately 56%, 29%, 15%, respectively, of the Battery Hill Deposit mineral resource.
The Moody Hill and Sharpe Farm Zones, just a few hundred meters apart contain all of the Measured and Indicated mineral resources for the Battery Hill Deposit.
Below is are edited remarks from Kepman’s July 7, 2021 conference call:
“When we started the project and wanted to produce a green, environmentally friendly, no carbon product, and we’re achieving that right now,” stated Kepman.
“There’s a revolution in the E.V. battery chemistry. Manganese is definitely part of that battery chemistry change. The longer it goes, the more manganese is getting involved in batteries.
A little while ago, and it was a nickel/manganese/cobalt battery. A lot of cobalt was involved in we were using 10% manganese. Cobalt is toxic and expensive – about $38,000 a tonne compared to manganese which is about $1,400 a tonne.
On Tesla Day, in September, they came up with a revolutionary battery, eliminating cobalt and increasing the content to one third manganese, two thirds nickel.
This lowered the cost of the battery and therefore lowered the cost of the car.
We’re very excited that manganese is coming into the forefront. In the last month, Volkswagen came up with a battery of 50% manganese, so it’s happening for Tesla, Volkswagen and GM.
There could be 25 mega factories in the next five years are coming on line. They’re predicting further increases in the percentage of manganese in a battery.” – end of Kepman.
“This brittle, silvery-gray metal was recently added to a list of 23 elements critical to the US economy,” reports Greg Nolan, “Manganese X appears to hold significant tonnage potential in the subsurface layers of its 1,228-hectare flagship Battery Hill Project in mining-friendly New Brunswick.”
Manganese X is the only company in North America which is moving towards commercialization of a manganese deposit.
This aggressive innovative company with a brand-new resource-estimate has market cap of only $39 million dollars.
Full Disclosure: Manganese X is an Equity Guru marketing client