First Phosphate announced on Wednesday that it has partnered with Pufahl Research Group at Queen’s University to determine the economic viability of the Lac à l’Orignal deposit as a source of clean phosphate. The resource is meant to supply the Lithium Iron Phosphate (“LFP”) battery industry for electric vehicles.
The partnership will see the group conduct a study on the detailed mineralogy and geochemistry of phosphatic ore and waste minerals. The study will look into the chemistry makeup of the minerals that form the anorthosite host rock–which the company said “are a rare and underexplored source of high-purity phosphate.”
“Advanced mineralogical data is essential for making decisions regarding site feasibility and how to cost effectively extract clean phosphate under strict Environmental, Social and Governance guidelines, with the lowest possible carbon footprint,” said CEO John Passalacqua. “Ultimately, we want to leverage our high-purity phosphate resource to help Quebec and Canada become a leader in the electric vehicle industry, and advance on our national climate change goals.”
Professor Peir Pufahl, Co-Director at the Queen’s University Facility for Isotope Research, said that the methods that will be used for the research will provide details on the phosphorus concentration as well as identify trace elements and waste rocks in ore.
“This high-fidelity picture is not possible using bulk whole rock analysis alone and is essential for understanding how to manage these elements during ore processing to safely handle tailings to ensure a fully clean, ethical and secure supply source,” Pufahl added.
The company recently completed its phosphate land acquisition strategy in the Saguenay Region, having purchased all existing claims that it had under option from third parties. It now owns a total of 2,693 mineral land claims under full title, representing 1,505 sq. km. of land in the region.
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