MINERAL INVENTORY FILE NO.
197
______________________________________________________________________________________________________
PRODUCT
LITHIUM
NTS AREA
52L6NW
REF.
LI 8
______________________________________________________________________________________________________
NAME OF PROPERTY
TANCO PEGMATITE (Litho No. 5)
OWNER OF OPERATOR ADDRESS
1988 – Tantalum Mining Corporation of Canada Limited
Bernic Lake, MB R0E 0G0

37.5% interest: Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Co. Ltd.
37.5% Interest: Kawecki Berylco Industries
25% Interest: Provincial of Manitoba
OBJECT LOCATED
Shaft
MINING DIVISION
Winnipeg
Latitude
5025.71
Longitude
9527.15
Uncertainty (m)
50m
UTM Zone
_____
Easting
_______
Northing
_______
L.S./Quarter Section
___
Section
15
Township
17
Range
15 EPM
DESCRIPTION OF DEPOSIT
The Tanco pegmatite, which is host to the deposit, occurs in the Archean Bird River greenstone belt, which is comprised of metavolcanic, related and derived metasedimentary rocks of the Rice Lake Group. The areas north, east and southwest of the belt are occupied, respectively, by the Maskwa Lake, Marijane Lake and Lac du Bonnet batholiths (Crouse et al., 1979).
The Tanco pegmatite was emplaced, cogenetic with the Lac du bonnet intrusion, as a bi-lobate shallow north-dipping, doubly plunging feature, into the core of a synclinorium. The core is composed of interlayered polymictic metaconglomerate, metavolcanic rocks and iron formation; synvolcanically intruded by large stocks of composite nature of gabbro, diorite, quartz-feldspar, porphyry and granodiorite (Crouse et al., 1979).
The pegmatite occupies an almost horizontal crosscutting fracture in near vertical dipping amphibolites, forming a flat, tabular body almost 1300 m long, up to 300 m wide and 20-90 m thick (Tanco, 198l); according to Cerny (1982) and Bannatyne (1985, p. 46), the pegmatite is 1440 x 820 m, and just over 100 m thick.
From a large-scale viewpoint the internal structure of the pegmatite exhibits nine zones of different mineral composition, texture and location plus a zone of contact exomorphism in the wallrock. Some of the outer zones appear to be concentric envelopes, but the inner zones occur as more or less discontinuous layers (confined to the upper central parts of the pegmatite). In detail, the structure, however, shows a complex array of mineral assemblages and thus the nine zones are an over simplification (Crouse, et al., 1979).
Lithium occurs in two zones, upper intermediate zone and lepidolite zone. The spodumene of the upper intermediate zone was first found by Jack Nutt Mines Limited (see: 52 L/6 SN 2). "The average thickness of this zone is 50 feet (15 m), locally reaching 70 feet (21 m), and generally increasing in the up-dip direction. Quartz and spodumene are the most abundant constituents, the latter in either tabular spodumene and quartz intergrowths after petalite, or subordinately, in long lath-shaped crystals. Giant crystals of microcline-perthite, platy cleavelandite, large blocks of amblygonite-montebrasite, and tabular crystals of petalite are subordinate. Lithian muscovite, apatite, triphylite-lithiophilite, lithiophosphate, pollucite, pseudo-ixiolite, microlite and molybdenite are accessory.
The lepidolite zone forms two flat-lying east-west elongated sheets up to 60 feet (18 m) thick, as well as several smaller bodies all within the central intermediate zone. They cut this zone at a low angle. The contacts with the surrounding zone are knife-sharp to transitional over 5 feet (l.5 m).... Lithian muscovite is the main constituent, with true lepidolite having been found to be scarce.... Minor amounts of albite, microcline-perthite, quartz, beryl, wodginite and cassiterite constitute the assemblage of accessory phases" (Crouse and Cerny, 1972).
Triphylite-lithiophilite "occurs as a primary component along with K-feldspar and quartz in zones (2) (4) (5) and (6)"; in zone (5) it also occurs in association with rhodocrosite, arsenopyrite, sphalerite, disordered tantalite, uranomicrolite, tantalian cassiterite and tantalian rutile (Fransolet et al., 1982). Tancoite, HLiNa2 Al(PO4)2(OH) was identified in association with apatite and lithiophosphate in spodumene-rich samples from the mine dump (Ramik et al., 1980). Diomignite, natural Li2B4O7, was recently discovered in fluid inclusions in spodumene from the Tanco pegmatite (London et al., 1987).
According to Penner and Clark (1971), the Tanco pegmatite is approximately 2.6 billion years old.
Another pegmatite, the lower Tanco pegmatite, occurs below the main Tanco pegmatite, and contains at least 30 mineral species; lithium mineral species found include lithian muscovite, spodumene, tourmaline, triphylite - lithiophilite (see: 52 L/6 TA l).
ASSOCIATED MINERALS OR PRODUCTS OF VALUE
Beryllium, cesium, tantalum, tin, niobium, apatite, gallium, rubidium, quartz, feldspar.
HISTORY OF EXPLORATION AND DEVELOPMENT
The deposit is situated along the northern shoreline in the west end of Bernic Lake and continues to the south and west under the lake. The deposit is accessible from the west by way of a branch road off Provincial Road No. 315.
The previous history of this deposit is discussed in Mineral Inventory Card 52 L/6 SN 2. In 1955, S. Grewinski staked the deposit as Lith No. 5 (W21664), area 10.44 ha, and assigned it to D.S. McLeod, who had uncovered the old drill records logging the interworking of the Jack Nutt Mine. "After drilling a 122 m hole that intersected pegmatite with a good grade of lithium" (Bannatyne, 1985, p. 43), the property was assigned to Montgary Explorations Limited (formerly, Montgary Petroleum Corporation Limited) which conducted a 7900 m drilling program.

.................................................Total No. ..............Estimated.................................. Average
Date........................................of DDH's............... Reserves............. % Li20......... Thickness
8/9/55........................................... 9..................... 1 080 000................ 1.52.............. 10 m (33 ft)
15/11/55...................................... 19..................... 1 938 000................ 1.485............ 12 m (39 ft)
12/4/56........................................ 33..................... 4 000 000................ 1.665
26/4/56........................................ 35..................... 5 611 568.................1.77.............. 15 m (50.3 ft)
13/9/56........................................ 40..................... 7 882 218................ 1.85

Early in 1956, it was reported that "Montgary Explorations has joined hands with the Kawecki Chemical Co. of Boyertown, Pa., to put the company into production and to erect Canada's first lithium processing plant" (Northern Miner, April 12, 1956). This was subsequently denied by Kawecki Chemical.
Late in 1956 sinking of a three-compartment production shaft to a depth of 93 m was started and early in 1957, The American Metal Company of Canada took out an option on the property. Under the terms of the agreement, a new company would have been formed with a 60% interest by Amco and 40% by Montgary. In addition, if the option was exercised, Amco would have had to build a 907 – 160 tonne (1000 - 1500 ton) concentrator and to assume the responsibility for marketing the lithium concentrate. In order to check the orebody, Amco employed three drills to grid drill the orebody. The additional 22 drill holes (2000 m, total footage) confirmed both the extent and grade and in fact extended the orebody to the southwest. However, "after a thorough survey of existing markets for lithium and its chemical derivatives and anticipated demand for the next decade, the American Metal Co., has decided not to exercise its option to bring into production the Montgary Explorations property" (Northern Miner, October 31, 1957). As a result of Amco's work, massive pollucite containing up to 35.43% Cs2O was found in five separate drill holes.
In anticipation of bringing the mine into production, the shaft had been sunk to a depth of 93 m (306 ft) and the main station cut at the 86 m (282 ft) level. The shaft was sunk through a narrow section of the main ore-zone and an estimated 907 tonnes (1000 tons) of ore stockpiled on surface. A 23-tonne (25-ton) bulk sample was shipped to the Lakefield Research Laboratories to ascertain the most suitable crushing method. Work ceased in the fall of 1957 and the shaft was allowed to flood.
Early in 1959, it was reported that agreements had been reached for several thousands of tonnes (tons) of high grade amblygonite with Metallgesellschaft A.G. of Frankfurt, Germany. "Some 3600 tonnes of amblygonite was shipped to West Germany in 1959 - 1960" (Bannatyne, 1985). Reserves at this time were estimated to be over 8 166 970 tonnes (9 000 000 tons) averaging 2.14% Li2O (Northern Miner, April 16, 1959). A month later the water was pumped out of the shaft and drifting toward the pollucite deposit begun. It was stated that a contract for 2720 tonnes (3000 tons) of quartz at $15.40 a tonne ($l4/ton) was signed (Northern Miner, May 14, 1959).
In the middle of 1959, it was decided to examine a large body of aplitic albite for columbium-tantalum. Although the presence of several million tonnes (tons) of aplitic albite had been known for years, the material had previously been assayed only for tin content. Sampling of some 1360 tonnes (1500 tons) of material removed from the shaft and assays of representative samples showed that 450 tonnes (500 tons) of albite material average 0.l% Ta2O5 and 0.01% Cb2O5.
Late in 1959 it was reported that bulk samples of material taken from the drift face assayed 2.13% tin (Northern Miner, December 3, 1959). Gallium was also indicated (Northern Miner, December 10, 1959). Shortly after this Montgary Explorations Limited changed its name to Chemalloy Minerals Limited. For a continuation of the history, see Mineral Inventory Card 52 L/6 CS l.
As of December 31, 1972, the upper layer near the roof of the sill, which varies in thickness from 5 to 27 m (15-90 ft), is estimated to contain 4 537 205 tonnes (5 000 000 tons) 2.98% Li2O and in the lepidolite zone two sheet-like bodies up to 12 m (38 ft) thick are estimated to contain 97 730 tonnes (107 700 tons) 2.24% Li2O (Northern Miner, June 14, 1973). An experimental gravity survey done in 1977, was successful in delineating the spodumene-rich zones as a 'relative' gravity high (Trueman, 1976).
Ore reserves as of Jan. 1, 1980, were estimated at spodumene (lithia)
- 6 980 000 tonnes grading 2.76% Li2O (Zahalan, 1980).
In 1981, a study of triphylite-lithiophilite, which occurs in zones 1 to 6 and zone 9 of the Tanco pegmatite, was started (Fransolet et al., 1981).
Lithium reserves as of December 3l, 1982 are shown below (Bannatyne, 1985, p. 44):

..........Lithium ..................................Tonnes....................... Grade
a) Spodumene zone....................... 6 667 719.................... 2.75% Li2O
b) Lepidolite........................................ 97 705.................... 2.24% Li2O

Reserves (proven, possible, probable) as of December 31, 1983 were reported as 6 624 320 tonnes (7 300 000 tons) with an average grade of 2.76% Li2O (Canadian Mines Handbook, 1987-88, p. 373).
Spodumene pilot plant trials by Tantalum Mining Corporation of Canada Limited (Tanco) at Bernic Lake and by Kawecki Berylco Industries in Bayertown, Penn., were successful in producing a high grade lithium oxide concentrate suitable for use in the glass-ceramics industry. Plans were in hand to construct a plant to produce lithium compounds in Manitoba (see: 52L/6 TA 1). A lithium pilot plant was in operation from March to December 1973 (Canadian Mines Handbook, 1987-88, p. 373).
Tanco reported that the 100 tonne per day spodumene pilot plant commenced operation on May l, 1984, and has operated satisfactorily since start-up. (Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Co., Limited (HBMS), Report to Shareholders, June 30, 1984). The milling capacity of the plant was reported to be 150 tonnes per day in 1984. The pilot plant was the result of a temporary conversion of the tantalum mill to produce ceramic grade spodumene; a federal grant was provided in 1984 to assist in the mill conversion. The 300 tonne per day mill was constructed in 1985-1986 (Canadian Mines Handbook, 1987-88). Annual production was estimated at 12 000 tonnes. The engineering design was by Wardrop Associates of Winnipeg; the flow sheet design was by Tanco staff. The initial plans were to introduce heavy-medium separation capability, new product-blending, and load-out facilities. The next phase would add separate ore storage, grinding, flotation facilities for the spodumene ore, so that tantalum ore could be produced simultaneously.
In the spring of 1986 a new $6.4 million spodumene plant was completed, and sales of high grade spodumene concentrates suitable for the ceramics and glass industries were made to plants in the U.S., France and Japan. It was reported that l7 240 tonnes (19 000 tons) of spodumene ore grading at 3.0l% lithia was mined (HBMS, Annual Report, 1986). Tanco is producing lithium ore at a rate of 109 tonnes (120 tons) per day (Financial Post, 1986).
When the Tanco mine begins operations again in mid-1988, it is expected to produce 6800 kg (15 000 lbs) of ceramic grade spodumene concentrate annually (Winnipeg Free Press, December 4, 1987) (see: 52L/6 TA l).
HISTORY OF PRODUCTION
The following production history was reported by Bannatyne (1985, p. 5):

...........................................Spodumene (sp) or amblygonite (am)
..................................................................in tonnes
1958...................................sp (907 stockpiled)
1959...................................am 907
1960...................................am 2722
196l....................................sp 36
1962
1963
1964
1965-1968.........................No production
1969
1970..................................sp 907
197l
1972
1973..................................sp l8l
1974..................................sp l8l4
REFERENCES
Bannatyne, B.B., 1985: Industrial minerals in rare-element pegmatites of Manitoba; Manitoba Energy and Mines, Geological Services, Economic Geology Report ER84-1, p. 5, 43-49.
Canadian Minerals Yearbook 1983-1984: Review and Outlook; Energy, Mines and Resources Canada, Mineral Report 33, p. 59.1.
Cerna, I., Cerny, P. and Ferguson, R.B., 1972: Amblygonite - montebrasite; in The Tanco Pegmatite at Bernic Lake, Manitoba, ed. L.G. Berry; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 11, Part 3, p. 643-659.
Cerny, P., 1972a: Eucryptite; in The Tanco Pegmatite at Bernic Lake, Manitoba, ed. L.G. Berry; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 11, Part 3, p. 708-713.
Cerny, P., 1972b: Secondary minerals from the spodumene-rich zones; in The Tanco Pegmatite at Bernic Lake, Manitoba, ed. L.G. Berry; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 11, Part 3, p. 714-726.
Cerny, P., 1982: The Tanco pegmatite at Bernic Lake, southeastern Manitoba; in Granitic Pegmatites in Science and Industry, ed. P. Cerny; Mineralogical Association of Canada, Short Course Handbook 8, p. 527-543.
Cerny, P. and Ferguson, R.B., 1972: Petalite and spodumene relations; in The Tanco Pegmatite at Bernic Lake, Manitoba, ed. L.G. Berry; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 11, Part 3, p. 660-678.
Cerny, P., Trueman, D.L., Ziehlke, D.V., Goad, B.E. and Paul, B.J.,
1981: The Cat Lake-Winnipeg River and the Wekusko Lake pegmatite fields, Manitoba; Manitoba Department of Energy and Mines, Mineral Resources Division, Economic Geology Report ER80-1, p. 87-93, 152-153.
Crouse, R.A. and Cerny, P., 1972: Geology and paragenesis; in The Tanco Pegmatite at Bernic Lake, Manitoba, ed. L.G. Berry; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 11, Part 3, p. 591-608.
Crouse, R.A., Cerny, P., Trueman, D.L. and Burt, R.O., 1979: The Tanco pegmatite, southeastern Manitoba; The Canadian Mining and Metallurgical Bulletin (CIM Bulletin), v. 72, No. 802 (February), p. 142-150.
Davies, J.F., 1955: Geology and mineral deposits of the Bird Lake area; Manitoba Mines Branch, Publication 54-1, 44p.
Energy, Mines and Resources Canada, 1987, Mining and mineral processing operations in Canada; Mineral Bulletin MR 216, p. 21.
Ferreira, K.J., 1984: The mineralogy and geochemistry of the lower Tanco pegmatite, Bernic Lake, Manitoba, Canada; M.Sc Thesis, University of Manitoba,
Financial Post, The, 1986: Survey of Mines and Energy Resources, p.494; Maclean Hunter Limited.
Fransolet, A.M., Cerny, P., Hawthorne, F.C. and Chapman, R., 1982: Triphylite - lithiophilite in the Tanco pegmatite at Bernic Lake, southeastern Manitoba; University of Manitoba, Centre for Precambrian Studies, Annual Report 1982, Project B-14, p. 110-111.
Hamik, R.A., Sturman, B.D., Dunn, P.J. and Povarennykh, A.S.,
1980: Tancoite, a new lithium sodium aluminum phosphate from the Tanco pegmatite, Bernic Lake.
Hutchison, R.W., 1959: Geology of the Montgary pegmatite; Economic Geology, v. 54, No. 8, p. 1525-1542.
London, D., Zolensky M.E. and Roedder, E., 1987: Diomignite: natural Li2B4O7 from the Tanco pegmatite, Bernic Lake, Manitoba; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 25, Part 1, p. 173-180.
Manitoba Mines Branch:
a Corporation Files; Montgary Explorations Limited; Tantalum Mining Corporation of Canada Limited; Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Co., Limited (Annual Report 1986).
b Mineral Inventory Cards; 52L/6 SN 2, CS 1, TA 1.
Manitoba; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 18, Part 2, p. 185-190.
Mineral Policy Sector, Corporation Files: "Tantalum Mining Corporation of Canada Limited".
Mulligan, R., 1965: Geology of Canadian lithium deposits; Geological Survey of Canada, Economic Geology Series No. 21, p. 73-76.
Rinaldi, R., Cerny, P. and Ferguson, R.B., 1972: Lithium-rubidium-cesium micas; in The Tanco Pegmatite at Bernic Lake, Manitoba, ed. L.G. Berry; The Canadian Mineralogist, v. 11, Part 3, p. 690-707.
Springer, G.D., 1950: Mineral deposits of the Cat Lake-Winnipeg River area; Manitoba Mines Branch, Publication 49-7, 14p.
Trueman, D.L., 1976: Gravimetric survey of the Tanco pegmatite; University of Manitoba, Centre for Precambrian Studies, Annual Report 1976, Project B-10, p. 40, 43.
Trueman, D.L. and Turnock, A.C., 1982: Bird River greenstone belt, southeast Manitoba: geology and mineral deposits; Geological Association of Canada - Mineralogical Association of Canada, Joint Annual Meeting (Winnipeg, Manitoba), Field Trip Guidebook, Trip No. 9, p. 1-16.
Winnipeg Free Press, December 4, 1987, "Tantalum mining resuming operation as demand grows".
Wright, C.M., 1963: Geology and origin of the pollucite-bearing Montgary pegmatite, Manitoba; Bulletin of the Geological Society of America, v. 74, No. 7, p. 919-946.
Zahalan, R.G., 1980, Mining in Manitoba; Manitoba Department of Energy and Mines, Mineral Resources Division, Educational Series ES80-3, p. 30-33.
MAP REFERENCES
*Map 52L/6, West, Ryerson Lake (Topographic), Scale 1:50 000, Mines & Technical Surveys, Canada.
Map 1194 G, Ryerson Lake (Aeromagnetic), Scale 1:63 360, Manitoba Mines Branch and Geological Survey of Canada.
Map 49-7, Cat Lake-Winnipeg River area (Geology), Scale 1:63 360 - Accompanying Report by Springer (1950), Manitoba Mines Branch.
Map 54-1, Bird Lake area (Geology), Scale 1:12 000 - Accompanying Report by Davies (1955), Manitoba Mines Branch.
Preliminary Map 1975 F-9, Bird River area East (Geology), Scale 1:31 680, by D.L. Trueman, Manitoba Mines Branch.
Map ER80-1-1, Cat Lake-Winnipeg River pegmatite field (Geology), Scale 1:100 000 - Accompanying Report by Cerny et al.(1981), Manitoba Mineral Resources Division.
Map ER80-1-3, Winnipeg River pegmatite district (structural geology), Scale 1:50 000 - Accompanying Report by Cerny et al. (1981), Manitoba Mineral Resources Division.
Claim Map Series NW 6, 52L, Scale 1:31 680, Mining Recording, Manitoba Mines Branch.
URL
N/A
REMARKS
1. Mineral Inventory Cards 52 L/6 SN 2, LI 8, CS 1 and TA 1 form a continuous series.
2. Lithium hydroxide was used in canisters aboard the Apollo X1 moon flight as the Environmental Control System to keep the air clean.
joint venture in 1967 between The Goldfields Corp and Chemalloy Minerals. In 1971 Chemalloy purchased Goldfields 60% interest. Chemalloy subsequently sold 24.99% of its interest to Kawecki Berylco Industries; and after Chemalloy went into receivership in 1975, HBMS obtained a 37.5% interest in Tanco in 1978, with Kawecki holding 37.5% and the Manitoba Government 25%. Under the terms of an agreement Hudson Bay became manager of the operation.
NOTES
N/A
Compiled/Revised by:
JDB CFL HRW JDB HRW AGJ PA
Date
11-73 01-79 02-82 04-84 08-84 02-87 04-88