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Project Slideshow
Project location in South Africa
Project Area
View of Zandkopsdrift Carbonatite
Frontier warehouse in Springbok
On site storage at Zandkopsdrift
Rig on Site
Geoserve Drill
Angled Diamond Drilling
On site drilling
Sample Sites
Key members of the Frontier team on-site
Core Sample
Core trays
Weathered and fresh carbonatite

  Click images to start slideshow



The Company's principal project is the Zandkopsdrift project which comprises an area of approximately 60,000ha in the Namaqualand region of the Northern Cape Province, of the Republic of South Africa and includes the Zandkopsdrift rare earth deposit. Zandkopsdrift area is well situated approximately 450km north of Cape Town and 230km north of the deep water port of Saldanha Bay. Access to and infrastructure surrounding Zandkopsdrift is generally excellent.



Current Activities


In 2010 the Company focused on developing the Zandkopsdrift deposit and on completion of the 43-101 compliant independent technical report in October 2010 sought a listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange to raise funds to allow for the further development of the deposit. At the start of 2011 the Company initiated an extensive 15,000 metre-drilling programme at Zandkopsdrift. SGS Minerals Services is currently undertaking metallurgical test work on material recovered from Zandkopsdrift and from which it will seek to develop a flowsheet for the recovery and processing of rare earth oxides from Zandkopsdrift. SNC-Lavallin have been appointed as lead engineering consultants for the Zandkopsdrift preliminary economic assessment which is expected to be completed in Q4, 2011.


Geology and History


The Zandkopsdrift deposit comprises a carbonate-rich, magmatic rock deposit containing significant rare earth element bearing mineralization within outcropping and near surface, deeply weathered phases. The Zandkopsdrift carbonatite is exposed as a well-defined, outcropping hill, approximately 40m above a surrounding plain. Zandkopsdrift has been the subject of a number of geological, mineralogical and metallurgical investigations from the 1950s onwards. Most of the work was carried out by Anglo American in two phases over a six-year period, including during the 1980s, when the rare earth potential of Zandkopsdrift was investigated. All of the available rare earth related data from Anglo American’s work, which included extensive drilling, bulk sampling, metallurgical testing and related analyses, as well as Anglo American’s original cores, pulps and other samples, were acquired by Frontier in 2008. These data and samples have been validated by independent geological consultants, MSA, and, combined with data from work carried out by the Company, have allowed MSA to produce a CIM compliant resource estimate and a NI 43-101 compliant independent technical report on Zandkopsdrift.


The main rare earth bearing minerals of monazite and crandallite and the mineralization styles at Zandkopsdrift are similar to other rare earth deposits being evaluated and developed globally, most notably Lynas Corporation's Mount Weld deposit in Australia. The highest value heavy rare earth oxides, namely europium, terbium and dysprosium, are contained at elevated levels at Zandkopsdrift compared to several other deposits being evaluated elsewhere. In addition, the levels of thorium (178ppm) and uranium (47ppm) in the Zandkopsdrift deposit are relatively low, which compares favorably to many of the more advanced rare earth projects worldwide and reduces the potential environmental implications that would arise in the event of mine development being undertaken at Zandkopsdrift.


Resource Estimate


In summary, there are approximately 22.92Mt containing 532,000t of TREO at an average grade of 2.32% at Zandkopsdrift in the indicated resource category and an additional 20.81Mt containing 415,000t of TREO in the inferred resource category applying a 1% TREO cut-off.


Cutt-off grade




Average Grade


Combined TREO

('000 tonnes)

Indicated Resourse
Inferred Resource


It is important to note that there are a series of higher grade zones within the overall resource estimate at Zandkopsdrift that are considered to be of sufficient size to be exploited as discrete units within the deposit. The 2.5% cut-off zone is a discrete area referred to as the Zandkopsdrift B-zone which contains circa 450k tonnes of rare earth oxide and is expected to be the initial focus of the company's activities.


Resource Zones

Resource zone
Cut change
Resource (Mt)
Grade (% REO)
Contained REO (kt)


Resource is 43-101 compliant
Approximately 60% of the resource in at the Indicated Resource Category



3D Block Model of the Total Zandkopsdrift Resource (1% Cut-off)


3D Block Model of the Total Resource


3D Block Model of the Zandkopsdrift B-Zone (2.5% Cut-off)


3D Block Model of the B-Zone



Breakdown by Element within the Zandkopsdrift Resource


Distribution of Rare Earths


Breakdown of the Contribution to Revenue by Element


Contribution to revenue


Uses average REE prices for June 2008 – June 2011 from Metal-Pages
No value attributed to Holmium, Erbium, Ytterbium, Lutetium and Thulium



It should be noted that highest value heavy rare earth elements, namely europium, terbium and dysprosium, are contained at elevated levels at Zandkopsdrift by comparison to a number of other similar deposits being evaluated globally. It is also noteworthy that both the thorium and uranium content of the Zandkopsdrift resource are relatively low, at grades of between 178ppm and 47ppm respectively.

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