Syrah Resources Limited (ASX:SYR) announced that initial test work on Balama vanadium ore shows upgrade to a 5.02% V2O5 concentrate, possibly has the highest grade vanadium concentrate in the world based on research by investment groups and announcements by vanadium explorers.
As quoted in the press release:
The highest grade vanadium deposit in the world is said to be Largo Resources’ (TSX:LGO) Maracas project in Brazil (Ocean Equities Vanadium Sector Review 15 July 2011). Maracas has a Mineral Reserve of 17.2 million tonnes at 1.44% V2O5 and is slated to come in to production later this year. Largo has signed an off take agreement with Glencore, the world’s largest vanadium producer to take 100% of the production for the initial 6 years of production at Maracas.
Balama currently has an Inferred Resource of 1.15 billion tonnes at 0.23% V2O5. However, included in this resource are the following high grade zones (in the Inferred Resource category):
Mepiche – 145 million tonnes at 0.43% V2O5
Mualia – 136 million tonnes at 0.43% V2O5
Ativa – 21 million tonnes at 0.38% V2O5
A key difference between Maracas and Balama is the concentrate grade. Largo report that the average V2O5 concentrate grade is under 3.5%. This is said to be the highest grade vanadium concentrate in the world (Ocean Equities Vanadium Sector Review 15 July 2011). As noted, Balama can currently be upgraded to a concentrate grade above 5%.