Altona Rare Earths Plc - Monte Muambe - Start of Phase 2 Drilling PR Newswire

17 March 2022


(“Altona” or “the Company”)



Altona (AQSE: ANR.PL), a mining exploration company focused on the evaluation, acquisition and development of Rare Earth Elements (“REE”) mining projects in Africa, is pleased to announce that, following positive results from Phase 1 exploration of its Monte Muambe REE asset, it is proceeding with Phase 2 of the project.


  • Phase 1 results show above average REE levels
  • Two new mineralised areas identified
  • Phase 2 resource drilling to start in April 2022 and last for up to 12 months
  • Phase 2 will deliver: maiden Mineral Resource Estimate, metallurgical testing and scoping study
  • Phase 1 total spend was £580,000 and Phase 2 costs expected to be approx. £1.2 million
  • Full Intertek assay results expected by May 2022

Monte Muambe is a 4km diameter circular carbonatite intrusion located in Tete Province, Northwest Mozambique, held under Prospecting Licence 7573L. The Company commenced an initial drilling programme in October 2021, focusing on six target areas, drilling a total meterage of 590m Diamond Drilling (DD - 5 holes) and 2,541m Reverse Circulation (RC - 38 holes).

To date, the Company has full analysis results from 3 drill holes as well as samples from multiple drill sites which have been analysed on site using the Company’s recently procured pXRF field analyser, which provides immediate estimates of mineral content in samples. These have confirmed the presence of carbonatite-hosted rare earth mineralisation, at an above average grade Total Rare Earth Oxide (“TREO”) in four of the six targets drilled, with two of the targets (holes MM021 and MM042) being new discoveries open in several directions. This provides a clear basis to proceed to Phase 2.

The Company has also sent 705 DD samples and 974 RC samples (including QAQC samples) to certified assay labs operated by Intertek in South Africa and Australia, with the full result set expected to be received before the end of May 2022, which the Company will publish.

Phase 2 work will commence during April 2022 and include additional soil sampling, ground geophysics and scout drilling (1,200m RC), resource drilling (6,800 RC) and metallurgical testing, all of which will be used to produce a maiden Mineral Resource Estimate and a Preliminary Economic Assessment.

Soil sampling started on site in early February, after cyclone Ana subsided, and Altona is making arrangements to restart drilling operations in early April; the priority being to test the lateral extension of holes MM021 and MM042, and to continue drilling Target 1 in a south-easterly direction.

Christian Taylor-Wilkinson, Chief Executive of Altona, commented, “We believe that Monte Muambe could develop into a major REE resource. Initial results from our Phase 1 activities are very positive with higher than expected grades and the discovery of two new target areas. Phase 2 will work towards confirming these indications, via a Resource Estimate, and provide a solid platform for a substantial valuation of Monte Muambe.”


Results received from Intertek to date, include those for DD holes MM001 (partial), MM039 (complete) and MM040 (partial). Results for other DD holes and for RC holes are pending. Most relevant intercepts are listed in Table 1.

The most relevant intercepts from on-site pXRF analysis of duplicates of 3m composite RC samples are given in Table 2.

TABLE 1 (DD Intercepts)

Hole and Target Number Depth (m from surface) Intercept Length (m) TREO
MM001 0.22 77.47 2.087 Open down dip, results from 77.69m to 150m pending
Including 7.90 7.15 2.357
Including 17.54 13.52 2.648
Including 36.71 11.99 2.562
Including 61.71 14.08 2.952
MM039 33.33 65.71 1.947
Including 48.38 6.78 2.378
Including 70.85 10.04 4.044
MM040 67.75 15.95 2.394 Results from 0 to 67.05m pending
Including 68.61 5.61 2.984
MM040 108.20 13.80 3.432

Table 1. Significant intercepts for Phase 1 DD holes so far (laboratory assay results). In this table TREO% is the sum of all rare earths oxide laboratory assay results, including Yttrium.

TABLE 2 (RC Intercepts)

Hole Number Depth (m from surface) Intercept Length (m) TREO
MM002 51 12 1.02
MM003 19 12 2.00
MM005 30 27 1.44
MM021 28 68 1.49
MM037 61 9 1.72 Open down dip
MM038 58 12 1.44 Open down dip
Including 55 21 2.04
MM042 1 51 1.68
Including 40 9 4.24
MM043 Surface 32 1.67
MM044 Surface 9 2.06
MM047 28 30 1.57

Table 2. Significant intercepts for Phase 1 RC holes so far (pXRF assay results). Note that these results must be considered as temporary and that Certified Reference Materials (CRM) checks show that pXRF results are likely to be underestimated by approx. 25%. Final results from the laboratory will be published once received. In this table TREO% is the sum of all Nd, Pr, La, Ce and Y oxides pXRF assay results.


For further information, please visit or contact:

Altona Rare Earths Plc

Christian Taylor-Wilkinson, Chief Executive                                      +44 (0) 7795 168 157

Martin Wood, Non-Executive Chairman                                             +44 (0) 7880 787 080

Alfred Henry Corporate Finance Ltd (AQSE Corporate Adviser )

Jon Isaacs / Nick Michaels                                                                 +44 (0) 20 3772 0021

Optiva Securities (Broker)

Daniel Ingram                                                                                     +44 (0) 20 3411 1882

Yellow Jersey PR                                                                              +44 (0) 20 3004 9512

Tom Randell                                                                                       +44 (0) 7948 758 681

Annabelle Wills

Company Information

Altona Rare Earths Plc is a mining exploration company focused on the evaluation, development and extraction of Rare Earth Element (REE) metals in Africa.  It owns a REE mining project in Mozambique; the Monte Muambe Project, a Light REE mining project in the southwest of the country, where exploration work commenced on 1 October 2021. The Company is in the process of investigating other REE opportunities in Africa.

Notes on the use of pXRF analyser for rare earths exploration at Monte Muambe:

The Hitachi X-Met8000 is a pXRF equipped with a 50kv anode and specific programmes to enable the detection and quantification of Nd, Pr, La, Ce and Y, as well as of light elements relevant to carbonatites such as K, Mg and Si. Duplicate 3m composite RC samples were prepared using plastic cups covered by a mylar film and assayed under standard conditions using both the light elements programme (30s assay time) and the rare earths programme (60s assay time). Regular checks and calibration are done using a SiO2 blank and various CRMs. In the current conditions, pXRF results give a good indication as to the degree to which samples are mineralised, and are usable as a decision tool, but are not final and should be considered with caution.