PFS on Rare Earth Co.s B.C. Project Expected to be Robust

With this season’s drilling behind it, the Canadian explorer plans to start, by year-end, the next step in advancing its project, noted a Noble Capital Markets report.

This quarter Defense Metals Corp. (DEFN:TSX.V; DFMTF:OTCQB; 35D:FSE) intends to commence a prefeasibility study (PFS) on its Wicheeda rare earths project now that the company has finished successful 2022 diamond drilling there, reported Noble Capital Markets analyst Mark Reichman in an October 27, 2022 research note. A completed PFS is expected in H1/23.

Reichman expects the PFS to be “robust,” he wrote.

“In addition to [the] significant potential to expand the resource and extend the mine life beyond 19 years, we expect grade enhancement and the meaningful conversion of Inferred [resources] to Indicated and potentially Measured,” Reichman added.

This will be in large part due to two sets of drill results, those from Defense Metals’ 2021 and 2022 programs, supporting the study, noted Reichman.

He relayed that the Canadian explorer just completed drilling 18 holes for 5,500 meters (5,500m) at Wicheeda. This 2022 work included a handful of pit slope geotechnical and hydrogeologic holes over 1,150m, the results of which will help in designing the slope of the open pit for mining.

Assays from the 2022 drill campaign continue to trickle in.

“We think Defense Metals is well positioned to benefit from growing demand for rare earths used in electric vehicle batteries, metal alloys, and advanced technology applications,” wrote Reichman.

The most recent results are from infill hole WI22-70, which Defense Metals just announced.

The hole, drilled for 383m in the deposit’s northern area, “intersected a broad zone of mineralized dolomite carbonatite averaging 2.5% total rare earth oxide over 113m,” reported Reichman. WI22-70 is the sixth hole of the 2022 drill program for which Defense Metals has announced results.

“The assay results released thus far have been outstanding and are expected to contribute greatly toward upgrading resource categories in support of the preliminary feasibility study,” Reichman wrote.

In the 2022 drill holes reported to date, the percentage of TREOs was as high as 6.7 (hole WI22-68), and interval lengths surpassed 100m (holes WI22-64, -67, and -68).

Noble has an Outperform rating on this exploration company.

“We think Defense Metals is well positioned to benefit from growing demand for rare earths used in electric vehicle batteries, metal alloys, and advanced technology applications,” wrote Reichman.

Noble’s target price on the company is $0.70 per share, which compares to Defense Metals’ current share price of about $0.24.

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