Robert Mackay, President and CEO of Stans Energy Corp. (TSX-V: HRE, OTCQX: HREEF), (“Stans” or the “Company”), is pleased to announce that Plant #3 of the company’s Kashka REE Plant (KRP) will be ready for operational testing by mid-July 2012, and by August 30, 2012, the KRP is expected to be ready to produce its first product – Heavy Rare Earth Oxides of Dysprosium, Gadolinium, and Erbium to 99.99% purity
The three heavy rare earths are to be recovered from loaded ion exchange resins located in the circuit since plant operations were suspended in the early 1990s. Since the acquisition of KRP in spring 2011, Stans Energy has undertaken an extensive refurbishment program at Plant #3. Although Plant #3 had not operated for nearly 20 years, much of the production equipment has remained in place and is ready to be restarted.
“We are extremely pleased with the progress made to date at Plant #3. Through the course of our renovation, and in consultation with our technical advisors at VNIIHT, we discovered the potential for recovering nearly two tonnes of mixed rare earths oxides from concentrate that remains in the holding tanks. The concentrate consists of Dysprosium, Gadolinium, Samarium, Yttrium, Holmium, Ytterbium, Erbium, Thulium and Lutetium This production test run will demonstrate the operational viability of the KRP plant. This validation of our proven metallurgical processes and production assets will solidify our position as one of the front-runners to Rare Earth Oxide production outside of China. In this period of transition from project development through infrastructure build-out, and ultimately production readiness, Stans Energy will continue the evaluation of other potential sources of concentrates. Above all, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate our engineering and technical teams on this milestone achievement and for their contribution to company progress. “
The Russian Research Institute of Chemical Technology (VNIIHT) is currently designing new technology that will be incorporated into a new Plant #1. This plant was historically used to both crack the concentrate from the milling stage and remove radioactivity before it was sent to Plant #2 for solvent extraction. Based on consultations with VNIIHT, Stans expects the process circuit design to be finalized in Q3 2012. This design will be incorporated into the Company’s Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS), which will begin in Q3 2012.
Plant #2 was previously used for solvent extraction of rare earths. Stans is investigating whether to rehabilitate Plant #2, or to construct a 1500 tonnes per year new plant using plastic solvent extraction equipment. Until that decision is made, pilot scale extraction testing will be continued in Plant #3.
P.S. The 30 day suspension only stopped Stans from more drilling of Kuttesay II, it didn't effect Plant 3, a seperate property.