AIM-listed Bluejay Mining has announced that it has discovered a deposit of ilmenite in Greenland, describing it as the purest form of the mineral in the world.
Ilmenite, a type of titanium oxide, is used ubiquitously in white paint. With the advent of 3D printers, the mineral is also in high demand in the 3D printing industry.
The mining contractor reported that the mine contains approximately 23.6 million tonnes of ilmenite at 8.8 per cent purity. The company also revealed that it has assayed merely 17 per cent of the mineral deposit, and therefore the chances are high that the cache may be much larger. Should this be the case, it would turn out to be the biggest deposit of ilmenite in the world.
Bluejay Mining Managing Director Rod McIllree stated that the project is taking place at the right time as the ilmenite market is witnessing reduced supplies, increasing prices, and acute shortage of investment. He pointed out that demand for the mineral is rising across the world, and ilmenite extracted by Bluejay Mining has the potential to beat competition since its mineral will be the purest in the market.
The mining contractor expects to start production in 2018. However, this depends on the project successfully completing a feasibility study. Once the project starts, Bluejay Mining will need to dredge sand to get access to the mineral, and it will also be shipping the necessary supplies by sea.
McIllree believes that the company will not need a huge infrastructure setup as it will be transporting small volumes of ilmenite due to its purity.
Bluejay Mining is being supported by the government of Greenland, which has been looking at different ways to get access to the mineral wealth in the country and give its economy a boost. At the moment, Greenland is heavily dependent on Denmark, which offers it numerous subsidies.