UEX Corporation (UEX-T) took part in the TSX Composite Index’s rally on January 5th.
While higher oil prices and a better outlook for financials were deemed the key culprits behind the Index’s rise, UEX’s gains were fuelled by a newly issued resource estimate and a resource update for two deposits at its Hidden Bay project in the eastern Athabasca Basin in Northern Saskatchewan.
A new national instrument 43-101 resource estimate on the Raven deposit put 3.97 million tonnes of ore grading 0.105% U3O8 in the indicated category for 9.15 million pounds of U3O8. The estimate put another 490,000 tonnes grading 0.104% U3O8 in the inferred category for 1.13 million lbs of U3O8. The cutoff grade used for those figures was of 0.05% U3O8.
As for the Horseshoe deposit, which sits adjacent to Raven, the deposit now has 3.58 million tonnes grading 0.24% U3O8 in the indicated category for 18.69 million lbs of U3O8, and 310,000 tonnes grading 0.21% U3O8 in the inferred category for 1.43 million lbs of U3O8.
The third key deposit at the site is West Bear but UEX says resources there did not change significantly from the December 2007 compliant resource calculation, and stand at 78,914 tonnes grading 0.908% U3O8 for 1.58 million pounds U3O8.
UEX says the western and eastern portions of Raven are both open and that it will conduct step out drilling there this month.
As for longer term production plans, with Cameco’s Rabbit Lake mill less than 5 km northeast of Hidden Bay, and AREVA’s McClean Lake sitting just 12 km northwest of the project, UEX is considering a toll milling arrangement with one of the companies.
It is also says it is considering building a stand-alone facility.
Either way, the company says the impermeable basement rocks at both Raven and Horseshoe make them good candidates for tailings ponds once they are mined via open pit.
UEX says a feasibility study will start soon in parallel with resource expansion and drilling.
The company’s winter 2009 drilling program calls for 25,000 metres of drilling that will test open and partially defined areas of mineralization which lie beyond the current resource limits.
Total resources at Hidden Bay, using a cutoff of 0.05% U3O8 now stand at 29.43 million lbs of U3O8 in the indicated category and 2.56 million lbs U3O8 in the inferred.
Mineralization at Horseshoe and Raven is made up of shallow dipping zones of hematization with disseminated and veinlet pitchblende-boltwoodite-uranophane that are hosted by folded arkosic quartzite gneiss. Mineralization comprises a combination of disseminated pitchblende-chlorite-hematite, and narrower, higher grade nodular and veinlet pitchblende in hematite-clay alteration.
UEX is involved in 19 uranium projects, seven of which are 100% owned by it. All of the projects sit in along the perimeter of the Athabasca Basin.
In Toronto on Jan. 5 the company’s shares were up 21% or 19¢ to $1.10 on roughly 3 million shares traded. Its share price has moved between 45¢ and $7.58 over the last 52 weeks and it has roughly 184 million shares outstanding.