Leach Test Recovery Exceeds 90% for all REE's and Zr

VANCOUVER, May 4 /CNW/ - Tasman Metals Ltd. ("Tasman" or the "Company") (TSXV: TSM) (Frankfurt: T61) (Pinksheets: TASXF). Mr Mark Saxon, President and CEO, is pleased to report on significant advancements made in the metallurgical processing research being carried out on rare earth element (REE) - zirconium (Zr) mineralization from the Norra Karr project by SGS Minerals Services (SGS).   This first stage of metallurgical test work has demonstrated that:

  • 90% of REE mineralization at Norra Karr is hosted by zirconosilicates that liberate effectively and have high surface area exposure, making them available for attack by acid;

  • Greater than 90% of REE's have been recovered from the Norra Karr mineralization during leach testing, by applying a pre-leach at room temperature, followed by an acid roast and leach.

"Given the key hurdle for REE projects is often metallurgy, we are extremely pleased to have developed such a successful processing method for Norra Karr mineralization in such a rapid timeframe, and congratulate all the SGS staff involved" said Mark Saxon, President & CEO of Tasman. "The flow-sheet uses widely available metallurgical chemicals at modest temperatures, which we believe augurs well for Norra Karr to be a potential low cost heavy REE and zirconium producer.  Furthermore, we are encouraged that this high recovery has been achieved on typical "run of mine" mineralization, without any pre-concentration."

Metallurgical Procedure

In November 2011, a 100 kg sample obtained from drill core was submitted to SGS.  This sample was representative of the NI43-101 inferred mineral resource grade at Norra Karr.  Following crushing and grinding, SGS ran a variety of physical concentration tests (beneficiation) including gravity, floatation and magnetic separation methods.  This work is being further pursued.

As reported by the Company on April 4 2011, mineralogical characterization identified zirconosilicates to be the dominant REE and Zr bearing phases, with eudialyte and catapleiite together accounting for approximately 90% of the contained REE's and zirconium.  Zircon and other refractory minerals are not present in significant proportion.  QEMSCANTM analysis of crushed sample has shown that the target zirconosilicates liberate effectively, and have high surface area exposure, making them available for attack by acid. 

Three roast and leach tests have been performed to date by SGS on this representative sample without any pre-concentration process.  The roast and leach process has been applied to a pulverized sample of ore.  The third such test (NK3 in Table 1 below) was extremely successful, where a pre-leach at room temperature was followed by acid roast and leach, which successfully brought into solution in excess of 90% of all REE's and Zr.  Table 1 below provides a compilation of recovery for various leach tests performed on equivalent samples.

Table 1: Percentage recovery of key elements, and conditions of roast and leach testing
    La   Ce   Pr   Nd   Sm   Eu   Gd   Tb   Dy   Ho   Er   Tm   Yb   Lu   Sc   Y   Zr   Fe Si
NK-1   58.3   56.6   56.4   56.2   51.4   49.0   48.3   46.5   46.0   43.4   44.3   43.3   43.1   42.7   37.3   47.0   61.4   8.5 1.0
NK-2   65.0   61.9   52.1   64.3   51.2   48.8   65.0   64.2   64.2   63.3   62.1   62.2   62.2   61.2   53.3   61.3   65.9   7.7 0.3
NK-3   96.7   95.4   97.1   97.1   96.4   95.9   95.4   94.4   93.5   92.7   92.8   92.3   92.1   91.4   74.4   92.9   91.1   3.7 3.5

NK-1: crushed ore where 80% of the sample passed a 24.6 micron screen; combined with 600 kg/tonne of ore of sulphuric acid, roasted for 4 hours at 150 degrees C; 381 kg of acid were consumed;

NK-2: crushed ore where 80% of the sample passed a 52.2 micron screen; combined with 2000 kg/tonne of ore of sulphuric acid, roasted for 4 hours at 150 degrees C; 394 kg of acid were consumed;

NK-3: crushed ore where 80% of the sample passed a 52.2 micron screen; combined with leaching solution at room temperature.  This solution removed, then ore combined with 600 kg/tonne of ore of sulphuric acid, then roasted for 4 hours at 150 degrees C; 345 kg of acid were consumed;

Preconcentration methods continue to be researched. The roast and leach method used in sample NK3 will now be further optimised to further enhance its effectiveness and reduce potential processing costs, including advancing research into flow-sheet optimization, aiming to reduce grinding and heating requirements and reagent consumption, reduce leach times, maximize REE recoveries and reduce recovery costs.

Norra Karr is located in southern Sweden, 300km SW of the capital Stockholm and lies in mixed farming and forestry land.  The site is well serviced by power, roads and water allowing all year round access, plus a local skilled community.  For an overview of the infrastructure and resource at site, please see a recent 3D fly through video at http://www.tasmanmetals.com/i/videos/video1/index.html.

About Tasman Metals Ltd. 

Tasman Metals Ltd is a Canadian mineral exploration and development company focused on Rare Earth Elements (REE's) in the European region and is listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol "TSM".  REE demand is increasing, due to the metals unique properties that make them essential for high technology and environmentally-beneficial applications. Since over 95% of REE supply is sourced from China, the European Union is actively supporting policy to promote domestic supply of REE's, to ensure the security of high-tech industry.  Tasman's exploration portfolio is uniquely placed, with the capacity to deliver "high-tech" metals from politically stable, mining friendly jurisdictions with developed infrastructure.

The Company's Norra Karr project in Sweden is one of the most significant heavy REE resources in the world, and the only NI43-101 compliant REE resource in mainland Europe.  With a TREO (total rare earth oxide) cut off of 0.4%, the Inferred Mineral Resource comprises 60.5 million tonnes grading 0.54% TREO and 1.72% ZrO2 (zirconium oxide), with 53.7% of the TREO being the higher value HREO (heavy rare earth oxide).  The resource is unusually low in radioactive metals relative to peer projects, with less than 15 ppm each of uranium and thorium.

For more information regarding rare earth elements, see the Rare Metal Blog at www.raremetalblog.com or Resource Stock Digest at http://strategicmetalstocks.resourcestockdigest.com/.

On behalf of the Board,

"Mark Saxon"  
Mark Saxon, President & CEO

The qualified person for the Company's exploration projects, Mark Saxon, President and Chief Executive Officer of Tasman and a Member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy and Australian Institute of Geoscientists, has reviewed and verified the contents of this release. Mr Les Heymann of Les Heymann Consulting, is the qualified metallurgical consultant for the project and has reviewed and approved the metallurgical disclosures presented in this release.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange), nor the Frankfurt Stock Exchange accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.

Forward Looking Statements. This Company news release contains certain "forward-looking" statements and information relating to the Company that are based on the beliefs of the Company's management as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to the Company's management. Such statements reflect the current risks, uncertainties and assumptions related to certain factors including, without limitations, competitive factors, general economic conditions, customer relations, relationships with vendors and strategic partners, the interest rate environment, governmental regulation and supervision, seasonality, technological change, changes in industry practices, and one-time events.  Should any one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should any underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described herein.


SOURCE Tasman Metals Inc.

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1305 - 1090 West Georgia St., Vancouver, BC, V6E 3V7
Company Contact: Mariana Bermudez +1 (604) 685 9316
Investor Relation Consultants - Mining Interactive 
Nick Nicolaas +1 (604) 657 4058
Email: info@tasmanmetals.com

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