The Kelly’s Basin deposit is hosted in a border zone of the unweathered Thatuna granodiorite within a lobe of the Idaho Batholith. I-Minerals has identified an initial resource of 9.95 million tons of Thatuna granodiorite, estimated to contain 4.77 million tons of feldspar and 1.79 million tons of quartz. In December 2010 I-Minerals completed a pre-feasibility study on the Kelly’s Basin deposit which contemplated the joint mining of Kelly’s Basin and the WBL tailings.
Extensive metallurgical testing repeatedly demonstrates I-Minerals can produce a high quality sodium feldspar (“Na-spar”) and high purity quartz products (>99.98% SiO2) . As part of the prefeasibility process, the Kelly’s Basin mill facility was designed to produce both high quality feldspar and quartz products through a standard flotation process, and high pure quartz products through multi-stage flotation. As designed the flotation circuit would not discharge water, which when coupled with the benign nature of the ores mined would be expected to have limited environmental impact on the surrounding area.
However, when compared with the economic assessment of the Kelly’s Basin deposit, the Bovill Kaolin deposits appear to have a higher value mineral product mix a superior NPV and IRR, lower initial capital costs and a shorter payback period. Accordingly, the Bovill Kaolin Deposits will be the focus of I-Minerals efforts in the near term with the Kelly’s Basin deposit to be re-evaluated in the future.