Tasman Expands Critical Metal Portfolio with Acquisition of tungsten Projects in Sweden
- Category: Tungsten’s News
- Published on Friday, 11 October 2013 16:12
Mark Saxon, President & CEO, is pleased to announce the execution of an agreement to acquire a 100% interest in a portfolio of tungsten projects in the Bergslagen mining district of south-central Sweden. This new tungsten portfolio includes several of the largest known tungsten occurrences in Scandinavia, including the former Yxsjoberg mine which accounts for more than 90% of the tungsten previously produced in Sweden. The projects lie 200 – 300km north of company's flagship Norra Karr heavy rare earth element project and were purchased outright for a total consideration of 100,000 fully paid common shares in Tasman Metals Ltd and C$45,000.
Tasman has acquired 6 tungsten projects (Yxsjoberg, Gussarvet, Wigstrom, Sandudden, Gustavsberg and Gensgruvan) which are secured by 7 exploration claims totaling 3,680.4 hectares in size. All projects have extensive historic information including drilling, production and metallurgical data, and are supported by excellent road, rail and power infrastructure.
"Acquisition of this tungsten portfolio, including a former tungsten producing mine, has provided an excellent opportunity for Tasman to expand its position as a potential strategic metal supplier for Europe" said Mark Saxon, Tasman's President and CEO. "While we maintain focus on our globally significant Norra Karr heavy REE project, tungsten is an essential industrial metal that faces the same resource security challenges to REE's, with a Chinese supply monopoly and strongly growing demand. Tasman shall continue to seek additional aligned opportunities during this challenging market for junior resource companies."
Based on its economic importance and high risk of supply disruption, tungsten has been named a "critical" metal in recent British Geological Survey (BGS) and European Commission (EC) publications. Tungsten is an essential industrial element with hundreds of end-use applications. It has the highest melting point (3,410°C) and highest tensile strength (19.3 gms/cc) of all pure metals and is therefore highly sought after for drilling and cutting equipment (termed hardmetals), specialty steels and aerospace applications.
Today, greater than 80% of tungsten is sourced from Chinese mines, therefore, presenting similar resource security challenges to rare earth elements. Since 2008, Chinese domestic demand has exceeded its own supply, resulting in a near doubling of price for tungsten concentrate over this period, and a gradual increase in total traded volume. Tungsten demand growth has consistently outperformed GDP growth.
Tungsten (the chemical symbol for which is W) holds a strong historic connection with Sweden. The name tungsten is derived from the Swedish for heavy (tung) stone (sten) relating to the high density of the metal. In 1781, mineral samples now known to be scheelite from the Bispberg mine (located 60km NE of Yxsjoberg) were analyzed by renowned Swedish chemist Carl Wilhelm Scheele. Scheele demonstrated that the mineral contained calcium and a material he named tungstic acid.
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