Game-Changing sedimentary deposits are poised to become the lithium mineralization of choice in Nevada.

American Lithium has assessed the opportunity and undertaken strategic acquisitions to leverage the outstanding regional mineralization potential. As a result, the Company currently holds a significant land position in Nevada at the Tonopah Lithium Claims (TLC) area, a potentially important sedimentary play with impact across the region.

The TLC Project is a lithium sedimentary deposit located near the regional hub and county seat in the town of Tonopah, Nevada. Consequently, logistics (paved roads, power, etc.) are superior for development and water resources are not constricted.

The TLC project is one of the most promising and underdeveloped lithium sedimentary basins in North America with a land claim of over 4,000 contiguous acres. Our recent 43-101 compliant Technical Report shows a measured and indicated resource of 5.37 Mt of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) along with another 1.76 Mt LCE inferred resource.

Located approximately 4 hours from the Tesla Gigafactory, the TLC Project aims to offer an economic alternative to regional players such as the productive Ioneer Ltd. (formerly Global Geoscience) lithium claystone project, and even the oldest & largest lithium mine in the U.S. at Clayton Valley.

American Lithium Corp has extensive and up-to-date experience at permitting, working and managing reclamation in Nevada. The Company has implemented ongoing exploration and drilling activities on its claims under the auspices of the Tonopah office of the Bureau of Land Management. American Lithium has submitted reclamation bonds on all its work and maintains reclamation efforts on its drilled properties.

Tonopah Lithium ClaIMS

TLC’s recent 43-101 compliant Technical Report shows a measured and indicated resource of 5.37 Mt of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) along with an inferred resource of 1.76 Mt LCE, cementing TLC as one of the largest lithium resources in North America. Additionally, metallurgical tests have shown that 90% of the lithium can be extracted in less than 10 minutes, which is considerably faster than comparable projects.

2019 drill program samples assayed up to 2,285 ppm lithium with numerous samples over 1,000 ppm lithium. Associated grab samples over 2 square miles showed up to 1,690 ppm lithium, with 28% of samples over 1,000 ppm lithium. Company spectrographic analysis identified samples as high as 2,460 ppm lithium.

TLC Project Technical Report (NI 43-101)

TLC advantages

  • Low overburden
    • Lithium ore starts at surface
    • Lithium production from Day 1
  • No selective mining
    • No smectite means no hectorite
    • 100% digestible ore
  • No water issues
    • The entire resource is above the water table
    • No groundwater, runoff, or watershed issues
  • 100% North American Ownership
  • No significant levels of deleterious elements
    • Very low mercury, arsenic, or radioactive elements
    • No contaminants in waste ore

TLC Project Overview

Watch our latest videos and continue to read below to find out more about our exciting project.

TLC Project Update: Winter 2019
TLC Project Update: Core Sampling
TLC Project Update: Extraction & Development

Resource

The recently published 43-101 compliant Technical Report showed a measured and indicated resource of 5.37 Mt LCE, with another 1.76 Mt LCE inferred. American Lithium is now optimizing its metallurgical process parameters to maximize the economics of the battery grade lithium compounds for the North American battery manufacturing market.

 

Comparable Regional Sedimentary Operations

Nevada is home to a few lithium claystone projects in various stages of development. All of them have advantages and disadvantages. Some of these projects require coprocessing of other minerals, and some require overburden removal.

We believe that American Lithium’s TLC project stands out as one of the largest resources with simple mining and low-cost processing using locally sourced, low cost inputs.

Mineralization

2019 drill program found samples up to 2,460 ppm lithium with numerous samples over 1,000 ppm lithium. Surface grab samples taken on the TLC claims over an area of two square miles, assay from 220 ppm to 1810 ppm lithium, with 9 samples above 1,000 ppm lithium. Clay, silt, volcanic ash and diatomaceous earth are interlayered. There is substantial evidence of fossil hot-springs throughout the area. Some samples contain thin (mm scale) bands of sandstone, thicker sandstone beds were not sampled. Exposed sandstone beds are about 1 foot thick. The lithium mineral in the TLC samples is apparently not hectorite (a silicate mineral), as using MS 61 (4 acid) gives lower lithium values than using MS 41 (aqua regia-2 acid). CLICK MAP TO ENLARGE.

Metallurgical Process

American Lithium’s metallurgical tests validate the deposits found across its project area offers significant production economics. Our results show that over 90% of the lithium can be leached from the claystone within 10 minutes using sulfuric acid that will be produced on site. This extraction rate indicates the dominant lithium bearing minerals present are not hectorite, a refractory clay mineral which requires roasting to liberate the lithium. Following the lithium extraction, locally sourced, low-cost reagents are used to neutralize the solution and drop out unwanted transition metals, followed by the precipitation of the dissolved magnesium and calcium prior to the production of battery quality lithium compounds.

Workplan

  • American Lithium aims to lead the way with low-cost recovery of leachable lithium sediments
  • Now that TLC has a published resource of 5.37 Mt LCE, American Lithium will optimize its process parameters through a carefully designed metallurgical testing program with SND Consulting and McClelland Laboratories. This will provide the knowledge to maximize the low-cost recovery of battery grade lithium compounds. Tests include:
    • Bond and Abrasion Index Determination
    • Bulk cure testing, agglomeration of large 12-kilogram sample to produce a sample for solid-liquid process testing.
    • Solid-liquid process testing subcontracted to Pocock Industries
  • American Lithium is moving forward with a Preliminary Feasibility Study (PFS) report from a major engineering firm to determine the initial economics of battery grade lithium compound production the TLC site by early 2021.
  • American Lithium aims to move towards a pilot plant stage for initial lithium compound production by 2021
  • Plan of Operation is the next step in permitting with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). This requires several studies, such as:
    • Biological – done
    • Cultural – next step
  • Drill piezometers and complete basin wide ground water analysis to assist in water supply determination and to stablish ground water regime as per Technical Report recommendations.
  • Initiate project-wide leachability confirmation.
    • 260 samples spread out over the entire claim to be leached as per Technical Report recommendations.

Exciting Opportunities

  • American Lithium along with research partners has applied for a Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) FY2020 AMO Critical Materials Grant. Partners include University of Nevada, Reno, McClelland Metallurgy Labs and Oak Ridge National Laboratories. The application was made under Topic 1, Areas of Interest 1.
    • A second application involving American Lithium, lead by American Battery Metals, was submitted under Topic 1, Area of Interest 2 with American Lithium and DuPont Chemicals as team members.
  • In a first of its kind study, samples of TLC claystones have been submitted to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for an investigation on how lithium is resident in the claystone matrix using an electron microscope.

 

Near Term Opportunity Summary

Based on American Lithium’s published resource and its continued resource verification and metallurgical process testing, American Lithium will continue to de-risk this valuable resource by optimizing its process parameters through the construction of a pilot plant to maximize the low-cost production of battery-grade lithium compounds for the North American battery manufacturing market.

 

2020 Drill Program

2020 Drill Plan

See link below for project results.

Drill Project Results

Cross Section

Formation Of A ‘Sedimentary’ Lithium Deposit Containing Diatomite

This diagram shows the setting of diatomite deposits in a lake and some of the processes that aided their formation. Rainfall produces streams that carry silica (Si02) and other nutrients, such as phosphorus (P), into the lake from nearby highlands. Silica also can enter the lake in air-fall ash that was erupted from vol­ canoes and deposited on the lake’s surface. Sunlight provides light for photosynthesis, which enables the diatoms to grow and bloom. After the diatoms bloom and die each year, their silica skeletons settle to the bottom of the lake and form a thin sedimentary layer. Over thousands of years, these layers accumulate to form a diatomite deposit.

 

About Nevada

Nevada has a strong reputation as one of the best jurisdictions in the world for mining.

The state has an abundance of natural resources making it one of the most important states in the country for mining. This includes lithium as well as gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc, tungsten, uranium, manganese and opal.

Mining has been and continues to be vital to Nevada’s economy. A major global producer of gold and the only state producing lithium, ideally positions it for the 21st century lithium “gold rush” due to its value for use in emerging stored energy technologies.

Consistently ranked as one of the best jurisdictions in the world to invest in mineral exploration and mining when mineral endowment, regulation, taxation, infrastructure, and political stability is considered (per Fraser Institute).

The many advantages of mining in Nevada over other jurisdictions include:
  • Skilled mining workforce
  • Substantive mining support businesses
  • Well-developed infrastructure
  • Favourable geology and large mineral endowment
  • Excellent access to public land
  • Arid climate
  • Streamlined permitting
  • Supportive State Government
  • Local County receives a net proceeds royalty
  • Home to the USA’s burgeoning electric vehicle industry
  • Home to North America’s only producing lithium mine, Albemarle’s Silver Peak Mine.
  • Low taxes with net proceeds minerals tax capped at 5% and Federal corporate tax at 21%.
Nevada is quickly becoming recognised as the key lithium state in the USA as new production methods transform sedimentary projects into potentially dominant domestic sources of this critical mineral.

History

Tonopah is an unincorporated town and county seat of Nye County, Nevada, United States. It is located at the junction of U.S. Routes 6 and 95, approximately midway between Las Vegas and Reno. It is home to the second-richest silver strike in Nevada history and was explored extensively since the early 1900’s.

The TLC project is just outside of Tonopah to the northwest. This is a new lithium claystone discovery and there is nothing in literature concerning the deposit. It is part of the Miocene age Siebert Formation consisting of sedimentary and pyroclastic rocks (Nevada Bureau of Mines Bulletin 92, Appendix A). The area of the TLC lithium deposit must be a sub-basin of the Siebert possibly formed in a graben or half graben, as it is the only area of the Seibert Formation documented to have diatomaceous earth layers, indicating a long-lasting lake. Indications of fossil activity (travertine terraces, sinter outcrops, et c.) are ubiquitous throughout the area of the TLC claims.


Tonopah, NV circa 1913 at the height of the silver mining boom

Famous Mizpah silver mine headframe

Infrastructure

TLC is about 6 miles northwest of Tonopah, off Poleline Road in Big Smoky Valley with an area formally explored for uranium to the west. TLC’s proximity to Tonopah, offers ready access to paved roads, electricity, water and skilled labor. The region is a center of epithermal mineralization that produced 138 million ounces of silver. The Hall Molybdenum Mine (now called Liberty Mine) owned by General Moly is a few miles north of TLC. This Climax style molybdenum deposit has a resource of 1,023 billion tons, is anomalous in lithium and appears to lie on the same north-striking range fault as the TLC lithium deposit.


Town of Tonopah

Tonopah Project

Topography

The Basin and Range physiographic province of the United States includes Nevada and parts of Arizona, Utah, and California. It consists of rugged nearly parallel northward-trending mountain ranges and broad arid trough. with interior drainage. Elevations range from 4,000 to 14,000 feet, above sea level. The valleys are filled with thick accumulations of water-laid pyroclastic rocks, silts, fanglomerates, and evaporites. Ephemeral saline lakes and playas are found in many of the valleys because of interior drainage and arid climate. Gently sloping alluvial fans extend from the mouths of canyons toward the low central portions of most of the valleys.

Evidence of alpine glaciation is apparent in the higher mountains, and shorelines of Pleistocene lakes con be observed locally along the foothills. The highly alkaline soil of many of the valleys supports little vegetation other salt grass and sage, but several types of conifers abound in the mountainous areas. The climate is semiarid to arid; therefore, the region is sparsely settled because habitable areas are dependent upon surface-water supplies.

The majority of the rocks of the Siebert Formation as evidenced relative to Seibert Mountain 2 km southwest of Tonopah, were deposited under alternating fluvatile and lacustrine conditions. The Tonopah area was probably a lake, surrounded by grassy, shrub-covered plains. The margins of the lake were shallow, and detris was supplied from the erosion of older volcanic rocks plus added pyroclastic material, most of which came from vents that were later filled by Brougher Rhyolite. The lake may have been somewhat alkaline, but was occupied by gastropods, ostracods and fish. Periods of partial desiccation occurred, and temperatures occasionally may have fallen below freezing. Algal mats were present along the shore in places and lake tufa was deposited locally.

Siebert Formation at Siebert Mountain, 2 km southwest of Tonopah. White tuffs and lapillistones overlain by a thin trachyandesite flow (dark band). A flow of Brougher Rhyolite forms the top of the mountain.

The late Tertiary was a period of increasing aridity in the Great Basin (Axelrod, 1940). The climate may be comparable to that described by Axelrod (in Barrows, 1971) in the Eastgate area, 150 km to the northwest. At that locality, the Eastgate flora indicates a rainfall of about 102 cm per year, with a mean annual temperature of 10°C and a mean annual range of 12° C. The precipitation was probably seasonal, with more moisture in the winter months. Following deposition of the sediments, a number of authigenic minerals were formed, especially in the lacustrine deposits. Zeolites (erionite, clinoptilolite, and analcime) are found as alteration products of tuffaceous material in the sediments. Also, authigenic potassium feldspar is present locally as overgrowth rims on detrital potassium feldspar grains.

Geology

The region was a geosyncline during much of the Paleozoic and Mesozoic eras and great thicknesses of sedimentary rocks accumulated. In Late Jurassic time, the Nevadan orogeny formed the Sierra Nevada Mountains, which bounds the province on the west. Erosion has exposed the granite core of this range. During the Late Cretaceous and early Tertiary, folding and thrusting of the Laramide orogeny deformed the sediments in a broad southward-trending zone that extends from Canada to Mexico.

The principal intrusive rocks range from Jurassic to Miocene in age. Younger plutonic rocks are found in the eastern part of the province, whereas those in the west appear to be related to the Sierra Nevada batholith. Extrusive and intrusive volcanic rocks, varying in composition from rhyolite to basalt are Tertiary to Recent in age.

High angle and transtensional faulting subsequent to the Laramide orogeny controls the present topography of long graben valleys partially filled with alluvial debris from the intervening mountains. Some of the faults are still active, as evidenced by local displacement of alluvial fans along the flanks of some mountain ranges.

Fault Geometry

The Property is underlain by Oligocene to Miocene age rhyolitic tuffs, ignimbrites and breccias similar to the upper volcanic complex of the Sierra Madre Occidental. This succession was subjected to basin and range extensional normal faulting during the Miocene that resulted in the development of a series of half-grabens. The half-grabens locally filled with fluvial-lacustrine sediments and intercalated tuffs. Alkaline volcanism around this time is thought to have contributed lithium and other alkali metals into these basin deposits.

Controls for the lithium sedimentary sequence and resulting mineralization are believed to follow the shape of a lake in which the clays became entrained. Faults underlying the lake may have served as channel ways for lithium-rich solutions to percolate into the lake basin and possibly alter and enrich the existing clays in lithium. Alternatively, the lithium may have been sourced from underlying volcanics and remobilized into the basin sequence at a later date.