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Search Minerals Announces Successful Metallurgical Testing of Foxtrot Project Sample to Recover a 55.48% TREO + Y2O3 Product (46.99% TREE+Y) with Overall Average Recovery of 78.8%

May 9, 2012

VANCOUVER, May 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ – Search Minerals Inc. (“Search” or the “Company”) (TSXV: SMY) and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Alterra Resources Inc., are pleased to
announce the completion of metallurgical tests on a bulk sample from
the Foxtrot Project to produce a high grade REE product for refining.

Highlights:

        --  Mineralogy studies (QEMSCAN) have shown that the REE minerals
            in Foxtrot are Allanite, Fergusonite, Chevkinite, with minor
            Bastnasite/Synchysite and Monazite
        --  A 91.4 kg sample of Foxtrot was treated by gravity separation,
            flotation and magnetic separation to recover 35.2 kg of
            concentrate with REE recoveries of 81.4 to 83% and Y recovery
            of 83%.
        --  The combined concentrate was subjected to single stage acid
            baking and water leaching with up to 93-96% extraction of REE's
            (La to Ho) to solution except for Er (91%), Tm (87%), Yb (80%)
            and Lu (68%). Dysprosium extraction was up to 94% and neodymium
            extraction was 96%.
        --  A combined water leach solution from a number of tests was
            treated by simple pH adjustment to precipitate iron, aluminum,
            silica and thorium with only ~1% loss of REE's
        --  The purified solution was treated by standard oxalate
            precipitation to recover a mixed REE oxalate product analyzing
            55.48% TREO + Y2O3Product (46.99% TREE+Y).  The recovery of
            REE's to the product was approaching 100%.
        --  The mixed oxalate product was very low in impurities with only
            6 ppm U and 282 ppm Th.  This product is expected to be refined
            to separate REE oxides using conventional solvent extraction
            and precipitation technologies.  The levels of U and Th are so
            low that there are believed to be no special restrictions on
            shipment of the mixed REE product.
        --  The overall average recovery (weighted) of REE's from the
            original Foxtrot project sample to final product for refining
            was 78.8%.
        --  SGS Minerals Services have recommended that further
            optimization work be started as soon as possible to confirm and
            improve the excellent results obtained to date as well as to
            start pilot plant design testwork.  Following optimization
            work, SGS Minerals Services have further recommended continuous
            metallurgical pilot plant studies.  The continuous pilot plant
            results would be used to support pre-feasibility and
            feasibility study of the Foxtrot Project.

A 1250 kg sample of Foxtrot mineralization was prepared from surface
channel samples taken at the Foxtrot site. The channel samples were
obtained from surface mineralization. The head analysis of the sample
sent to SGS Minerals Services is compared to the recently announced
indicated and inferred resource numbers for the Foxtrot Project in
Table 1 below. The values for the REE’s and Y are very close to the
reported resource values.

Jim Clucas, President of Search Minerals, stated “The Foxtrot success
story continues from outstanding drill results to excellent
metallurgical test results.  The SGS recommendation to proceed quickly
to continuous metallurgical pilot plant in keeping with the remarkable
pace of development of this project.”

The sample is deemed representative of the Foxtrot Project
mineralization for the purposes of metallurgical testing.

Table 1.  Indicated and Inferred Resource Values Compared to Channel
Sample Analysis


                       Indicated    Inferred     Channel Sample

    Tonnes    t        3,410,000    5,850,000    1.25

    Oxide     Units    Indicated    Inferred     Metallurgical

    Y2O3      ppm      1,345        1,290        1,404

    La2O3     ppm      1,946        1,716        1,771

    CeO2      ppm      4,138        3,657        4,372

    Pr6O11    ppm      466          414          516

    Nd2O3     ppm      1,687        1,494        1,750

    Sm2O3     ppm      298          268          338

    Eu2O3     ppm      15           13           16

    Gd2O3     ppm      234          216          260

    Tb4O7     ppm      39           36           43

    Dy2O3     ppm      218          208          257

    Ho2O3     ppm      42           40           50

    Er2O3     ppm      116          114          140

    Tm2O3     ppm      17           17           20

    Yb2O3     ppm      103          106          117

    Lu2O3     ppm      15           16           17

    ZrO2      ppm      13,014       13,746       21,687

    Nb2O5     ppm      879          796          1,015

    LREO      %        0.85         0.75         0.87

    HREO      %        0.21         0.21         0.23

    TREO      %        1.07         0.96         1.11

Notes:

      1. CIM definitions were followed for Mineral Resources
      2. Mineral Resources are estimated at a cut-off grade of 130 ppm Dy.
      3. Numbers may not add due to rounding
      4. LREO = oxide sums of La+Ce+Pr+Nd+Sm
      5. HREO = oxide sums of Eu+Gd+Tb+Dy+Ho+Er+Tm+Yb+Lu+Y
      6. TREO = LREO + HREO
      7. The head analysis for the Channel Sample is a calculated head
         analysis from the beneficiation studies

MINERALOGY STUDIES

A bulk sample obtained from a Fox Harbour channel sample was submitted
to the Advanced Mineralogy Facility (AMF) at SGS Minerals Services
(Lakefield Site).  The sample was stage crushed to K(80) of 150 mm and then screened into two size fractions:  +38mm and -38mm
for the mineralogical study.  A micro-riffled sub-sample of each size
fraction was submitted for whole rock analyses.  Two graphite
impregnated polished epoxy grain mounts were prepared from the coarse
fraction and one from the fine fraction, and submitted for QEMSCAN(TM) analysis.  The mode of QEMSCAN(TM) analyses used for this project were the Particle Mineral Analysis (PMA)
and Specific Mineral Search (SMS).  The minerals identified in the
sample are listed in Table 2.

Table 2 – Mineral List and Formulas


       Mineral                                                                                                                                                                                                Mineral Formula                                                                       Mineral      Mineral Formula

     Columbite  (Fe,Mn)Nb,Ta2O6    Plagioclase   (NaSi,CaAl)AlSi2O8
       (Fe)

    Bastnasite                                                                                                                                                                                                  (Ce, La)CO3F                                                                      K-Feldspar          KAlSi3O8

    Synchysite                                                                                                                                                                                               Ca(Ce,La)(CO3)2F                                                                       Biotite         K(Mg,Fe)3
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 (AlSi3O10)(OH)2

      Monazite                                                                                                                                                                                            (Ce,La,Pr,Nd,Th,Y)PO4                                                                      Quartz              SiO2

    Chevkinite                                                                                                                                                                               (Ce,La,Ca,Th)4(Fe2+,Mg)(Fe2+,Ti,Fe3+)-                                                           Muscovites/Clays    KAl2(AlSi3O10)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      (Ti,Fe3+)2(Si2O7)2O8                                                                                            (OH)2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Amphibole/         (Ca,Na)
    Fergusonite                                                                                                                                                                                              (Y,Er,Ce,Fe)NbO4                                                                      Pyroxene       (Mg,Fe,Al,Ti)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    (Si,Al)2O6

      Allanite                                                                                                                                                                                          (Ca,Ce)2(Fe2,Fe3+)Al2O-                                                                   Carbonates            CaCO3
                                                                                                                                                                                                           (SiO4)(Si2O7)(OH)

       Zircon                                                                                                                                                                                                        ZrSiO4                                                                         Fluorite             CaF2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hematite            Fe2O3
       Apatite                                                                                                                                                                                     (Ca,Ce,Y)5(PO4,SiO4)3(F,Cl,OH)                                                                   Ilmenite            FeTiO3
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Magnetite            Fe3O4

Mineral Abundance by QEMSCAN(TM)

Data for the modal abundance of the minerals and elemental distribution
are based on the PMA. Figure 1 illustrates the normalized mass % of the
REE minerals (excluding zircon).  It is apparent that allanite is the
primary REE phase.  The sample is dominated by quartz (35.8%) and
K-feldspar (21.0%), moderate amounts of amphibole/pyroxene (13.7%),
plagioclase (12.3%), minor Fe-oxides (4.4%), biotite (3.9%) and
muscovite/clays (1.6%), and trace amounts of other silicates,
carbonates, fluorite, other oxides and sulphides.  REE-Zr minerals
include mainly allanite (2.6%), zircon (2.5%), chevkinite (0.3%),
fergusonite (0.2%), bastnasite/synchysite (0.1%), monazite (0.1%) and
rare columbite. Most of the allanite (2.2%) occurs in the +38 mm, but
most of zircon (1.5%) in the -38 mm fraction. Note that amphibole and
pyroxene are grouped together due to their similar chemistries.

Figure 1 – Normalized Mineral Abundance of REE Minerals

Grain Size Distribution

The D(50) or 50% passing value from the cumulative grain size distribution of the
fergusonite, bastnasite/synchysite, allanite, monazite, chevkinite,
zircon, quartz/feldspars, muscovite, other silicate and oxide minerals
are as follows;


    --     fergusonite is ca. 22  --     quartz/feldspars is ca.
    ¼m;                                98 ¼m;
    --     bastnasite/synchysite  --     muscovite is ca. 24 ¼m;
    is ca. 51 ¼m;                      --     other silicates is ca.
    --     allanite is ca. 65 ¼m; 83 ¼m;
    --     monazite is ca. 24 ¼m; --     oxides is ca. 141 ¼m;
    --     chevkinite is ca. 53   --     overall particle is ca.
    ¼m;                                98 ¼m.
    --     zircon is ca. 24 ¼m

The grain size data indicates that it should be possible to liberate the
REE minerals from the barren gangue minerals using a moderate grind
size. This information bodes well for beneficiation of the Foxtrot
mineralization.

Mineral Chemistry

Electron microprobe analyses (EMPA) were conducted on chevkinite,
allanite, fergusonite, bastnasite and synchysite, zircon and an
undefined Si/Y/Ca REE phase.

        --  Allanite averages Ce 11.07 wt%, La 5.18 wt% and Nd 3.66 wt%,
            and minor Dy 0.40 wt%, Pr 0.92 wt%, Sm 0.24 wt%, Th 0.18% and Y
            0.30 wt%.
        --  Fergusonite carries both, but mainly HREE (heavy rare earth
            elements) and less LREE (light rare earth elements). It
            averages Y 17.76%, Nb 29.20%, and minor Dy 3.63%, Gd 3.42%, Er
            2.17%, Nd 1.76%, Ce 1.47%, Yb 1.27%, Sm 1.16%, La 0.44%, Ho
            0.85%, Pr 0.25%, Tb 0.68%, Tm 0.38%, U 0.37 % and Th 0.61%.
        --  A Si-Y-Ca phase consists of Y 14.45%, Nd 8.07%, Ce 7.70%, Gd
            3.99%, Dy 3.22%, Sm 2.94%, La 2.01%, Pr 1.42%, Yb 1.01% and Tb
            0.58%, Tm 0.54% and Th 0.27%. This phase is tentatively
            identified as a Y-britholite.
        --  Bastnasite/Synchysite consists of, in average, Ce 27.42%, La
            15.27%, Nd 10.92%, Pr 3.06%, Sm 1.44%, Gd 0.90%, Tm 0.33%, Dy
            0.28%, Tb 0.24%, Yb 0.18%, Th 0.17%, and Y 0.68%.
        --  Chevkinite consists of Ce 16.74%, La 6.84%, Nd 6.69%, Pr 1.87%,
            Nb 1.28%, Gd 0.73%, Dy 0.68%, Sm 0.98%, Yb 0.15%, Th 0.56% and
            Y 1.72%.
        --  Although based on a limited number of analyses, there are two
            populations of zircon grains, with Y-bearing and Y-barren. Y
            ranges from nil to 0.66% and averages 0.15%.

Elemental Deportment

Elemental deportment was estimated for a number of key elements.  The
plots for two of the economic elements in the Foxtrot deposit are shown
in Figures 2 and 3 (Nd, Dy).

Neodymium Elemental Deportment

The elemental distribution of neodymium is graphically presented in
Figure 2.  Allanite carries most of the Nd (66.4%), followed by
chevkinite (12.7%), monazite (10.1%), bastnasite/synchysite (7.9%) and
fergusonite (2.9%).

Figure 2 – Elemental Deportment of Neodymium

Dysprosium Elemental Deportment

The elemental distribution of dysprosium is graphically presented in
Figure 5.  Allanite and fergusonite carry most of the Dy at 49.3% and
40.5%, respectively, followed by chevkinite (8.8%) and bastnasite
(1.4%).

Figure 3 – Elemental Deportment of Dysprosium

Liberation and Association

The liberation and association characteristics of allanite, fergusonite,
bastnasite/synchysite, monazite, chevkinite and zircon were examined.

        --  Free and liberated allanite account for 66.8%.  The main
            association of allanite is as complex particles (25.8%), and
            minor middlings with zircon (3.8%) and quartz/feldspars (1.6%),
            and trace associations (1%) with other minerals.  Free and
            liberated allanite increases from 59.1% to 86.0% with
            decreasing size, while complex particles decrease from 33.4% in
            the +38 µm to 6.7% in the -38 µm fraction.
        --  Free and liberated fergusonite accounts for 31.4%.  The main
            association of fergusonite is as complex particles (30.8%),
            followed by middlings with zircon (21.4%), quartz/feldspars
            (11.4%), and less with allanite (1.6%) and other silicates
            (1.5%), while other associations are insignificant (1%).
            Liberation increases from 12.5% in the +38 µm fraction to 42.6%
            in the -38 µm fraction.  Complex particles decrease from 48.5%
            to 20.3%, with quartz/feldspars from 26.2% to 2.6%, but those
            with zircon increase from 8.9% to 28.8%.

The mineralogical work on the Foxtrot sample set the groundwork for
beneficiation studies.

BENEFICIATION OF FOXTROT SAMPLE

Three beneficiation techniques were studied in order to concentrate the
REE in the Foxtrot sample.  These include Wilfley tabling, magnetic
separation and flotation.  The Wilfley tabling was used to test
amenability to gravity concentration.  Magnetic separation (LIMS) was
used to reject magnetite from the Wilfley concentrates.  Flotation was
tested both as a primary method of concentration for the Foxtrot sample
and as a scavenging method to recover additional REE from the Wilfley
tails.  The work presented below is preliminary in nature but shows the
promise of these techniques.

Gravity Concentration with the Wilfley Table and Magnetic Separation

A ~100 kg charge was stage ground with the closing screen size of 105
mm.  The -105 mm fraction was screened on 75 mm, and 38 mm screens to
make 3 fractions.  The +75 mm fraction was tabled and the tails
re-passed. The test generated 3 fractions: Concentrate, Scavenger
Middlings, and Scavenger Tail.  The +38 mm fraction was tabled and the
tails repassed. The test generated 3 fractions: Concentrate, Scavenger
Middlings and Scavenger Tail.  The -38 mm fraction was passed through
the cyclone to eliminate unnecessary slimes on the table. The cyclone
overflow was filtered. The cyclone underflow was passed over the
Wilfley Table and the tail was re-passed. The Concentrate, Scavenger
Middlings and Scavenger Tailings were submitted for assay.  All the
table concentrates were passed through Low Intensity Magnetic Separator
(LIMS) to separate mainly magnetite. This flowsheet is depicted in
Figure 4.

Figure 4 – Gravity (Wilfley Table) and Magnetic Separation Flowsheet for
Foxtrot Testing

Table 3 summarizes the results of the gravity and magnetic separation. 
Using just these two methods, it is possible to recover 71.4% of the
Ce, 70.7% of the Nd and 70.7% of the Y into a concentrate containing
22.3% of the original mass.  While this is a good first result,
flotation was also examined to enhance the overall recoveries.

Table 3 – Summary of the Beneficiation of the Sample of Foxtrot Material
using Gravity and Magnetic Separation

     _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    |    Prod.  |   Weight  |                     Assays, %, g/t        |                     % Distribution        |
    |___________|___________|___________________________________________|___________________________________________|
    |       #   |   g  |  % |CeO2|Nd2O3|Y2O3|ZrO2|Nb2O5|SiO2|Al2O3|Fe2O3|CeO2|Nd2O3|Y2O3|ZrO2|Nb2O5|SiO2|Al2O3|Fe2O3|
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       1   |8,713 |9.53|1.50|0.58 |0.39|2.15|0.24 |57.8|3.70 |17.3 |33.8|32.2 |28.5|12.0|23.5 |8.12|4.88 |14.6 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       2   |1,484 |1.62|0.09|0.12 |0.10|0.76|0.10 |4.43|0.30 |97.4 |0.35|1.10 |1.25|0.72|1.65 |0.11|0.07 |14.0 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       3   |  167 |0.18|0.25|0.12 |0.10|0.76|0.10 |69.9|7.67 |11.4 |0.11|0.12 |0.14|0.08|0.19 |0.19|0.19 |0.18 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       4   |28,797|31.5|0.05|0.01 |0.01|0.57|0.01 |76.8|8.50 |4.10 |3.66|2.13 |2.39|10.5|4.58 |35.6|37.1 |11.5 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       5   |5,082 |5.56|1.56|0.57 |0.39|3.09|0.31 |58.0|4.20 |15.4 |20.5|18.4 |16.6|10.1|17.8 |4.75|3.23 |7.61 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       6   |  917 |1.00|0.07|0.03 |0.08|0.55|0.03 |4.23|0.35 |95.7 |0.17|0.20 |0.58|0.33|0.29 |0.06|0.05 |8.52 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       7   |  329 |0.36|0.10|0.03 |0.08|0.55|0.03 |77.4|8.06 |3.78 |0.08|0.07 |0.21|0.12|0.10 |0.41|0.40 |0.12 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       8   |17,382|19.0|0.11|0.05 |0.05|0.62|0.04 |75.3|8.53 |5.68 |4.97|5.14 |7.34|6.93|8.29 |21.1|22.5 |9.60 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |       9   |6,576 |7.20|1.00|0.48 |0.40|8.37|0.33 |61.5|5.44 |9.52 |17.0|20.0 |21.9|35.3|24.1 |6.52|5.42 |6.08 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |      10   |  976 |1.07|0.12|0.05 |0.10|1.10|0.05 |5.64|0.48 |92.7 |0.30|0.31 |0.81|0.69|0.54 |0.09|0.07 |8.79 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |      11   | 34.3 |0.04|0.31|0.13 |0.11|3.54|0.09 |70.8|8.02 |6.14 |0.03|0.03 |0.03|0.08|0.03 |0.04|0.04 |0.02 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |      12   |12,914|14.1|0.31|0.12 |0.09|2.20|0.06 |70.8|8.04 |7.43 |10.3|9.55 |9.55|18.2|8.21 |14.7|15.7 |9.33 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |      13   |8,019 |8.77|0.42|0.21 |0.16|0.97|0.12 |63.9|8.54 |12.3 |8.71|10.7 |10.7|4.99|10.7 |8.26|10.4 |9.59 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    | Calc Head |91,388|100 |0.42|0.17 |0.13|1.71|0.10 |67.9|7.22 |11.3 |100 | 100 |100 |100 | 100 |100 | 100 | 100 |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |Concentrate|20,370|22.3|1.35|0.55 |0.40|4.39|0.29 |59.0|4.39 |14.31|71.4|70.7 |67.0|57.4|65.4 |19.4|13.5 |28.3 |
    |   1+5+9   |      |    |    |     |    |    |     |    |     |     |    |     |    |    |     |    |     |     |
    |___________|______|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|

Table 4 – Flotation Test Result for Scoping Rougher Test

     __________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    | Prod. |   Weight |                     Assays, %, g/t        |                     % Distribution        |
    |_______|__________|___________________________________________|___________________________________________|
    |    #  |   g |  % |CeO2|Nd2O3|Y2O3|ZrO2|Nb2O5|SiO2|Al2O3|Fe2O3|CeO2|Nd2O3|Y2O3|ZrO2|Nb2O5|SiO2|Al2O3|Fe2O3|
    |_______|_____|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |Rougher| 536 |27.4|1.14|0.52 |0.35|4.71|0.27 |46.1|4.66 |27.4 |70.5|73.6 |81.7|73.3|62.7 |19.0|18.0 |65.8 |
    |Conc.  |     |    |    |     |    |    |     |    |     |     |    |     |    |    |     |    |     |     |
    |_______|_____|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|
    |Float  |1,419|72.6|0.18|0.07 |0.03|0.65|0.06 |74.2|8.04 |5.39 |29.5|26.4 |18.3|26.7|37.3 |81.0|82.0 |34.2 |
    |Tails  |     |    |    |     |    |    |     |    |     |     |    |     |    |    |     |    |     |     |
    |_______|_____|____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|____|_____|____|____|_____|____|_____|_____|

Flotation Separation

Flotation testing was conducted on a head sample.  The flotation was
performed as a rougher test with five stages of rougher flotation. 
Appropriate flotation reagents and test conditions were supplied by SGS
for recovery of allanite and fergusonite. The feed particle size was
80% passing 150 mm.  The flotation test results are shown in Table 4. 
Flotation by itself produced a concentrate containing 70.5% of the Ce,
73.6% of the Nd and 81.7% of the Y in a mass pull of 27.4%.  These
results are slightly better than the results of the gravity and
magnetic separation.

As a last step in the beneficiation testing, the Wilfley table tails (3
size fractions) were subjected to flotation to increase the overall
recovery of REE’s.  Note that the cyclone overflow was not floated. 
The additional rougher flotation concentrate recovered in this manner
was added to the gravity and magnetic separation products (Table 3) to
generate an overall concentrate.   The analysis of this concentrate is
shown in Table 5, along with the associated total recoveries. These
results should be viewed as indicative of the promise of conventional
beneficiation methods to recover the REE minerals from the Foxtrot
prospect.  There is ample scope to improve the overall recovery (by
consideration of the losses to the cyclone overflow – about 10% REE)
and the grade (by more selective beneficiation or the incorporation of
cleaning steps in the circuit).

Table 5 – Combined Gravity, Magnetic Separation and Flotation
Concentrate Product


           Concentrate Assay Recovery (%)

    Ce2O3   %        0.94          83.0

    Nd2O3   %        0.38          83.0

     Y2O3   %        0.31          83.7

     ZrO2   %        3.71          65.9

    Nb2O5   %        0.22          81.8

    La2O3  g/t       3968          86.2

    Pr6O11 g/t       1160          86.6

    Sm2O3  g/t        741          84.3

    Eu2O3  g/t         34          83.7

    Gd2O3  g/t        559          82.7

    Tb2O3  g/t         93          82.4

    Dy2O3  g/t        543          81.4

    Ho2O3  g/t        105          81.6

    Er2O3  g/t        297          81.7

    Tm2O3  g/t         42          81.9

    Yb2O3  g/t        249          81.7

    Lu2O3  g/t         37          81.8

     U3O8  g/t         54          83.8

     ThO2  g/t        274          86.6

Hydrometallurgical Extraction of REE’s from Foxtrot Concentrate

The gravity concentrate (Table 3) and the combined gravity/flotation
concentrate (Table 5) were subjected to acid leaching or acid baking at
200-250 °C followed by water leaching.  The results of the testing are
summarized in Table 6.

Table 6 – Hydrometallurgical Leaching Studies on Foxtrot Concentrates

     ____________________________________________________________________
    |Test |     |AL2 |AB4 |WL-AB4 |AB7 |WL-AB7 |AB8 |WL-AB8 |AB9 |WL-AB9 |
    | ID  |     |    |    |       |    |       |    |       |    |       |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |Feed |     |grav|grav|  AB4  |grav|  AB7  |grav|  AB8  |grav|  AB9  |
    |     |     |con | /  |calcine| /  |calcine| /  |calcine| /  |calcine|
    |     |     |    |flot|       |flot|       |flot|       |flot|       |
    |     |     |    |con |       |con |       |con |       |con |       |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |Time,|  hr |  6 |  2 |       |  1 |       |  1 |       |  2 |       |
    | hr  |     |    |    |       |    |       |    |       |    |       |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |Temp |  °C | 95 |200 |       |250 |       |250 |       |250 |       |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |H2SO4| Add |1000|1000|       |1000|       |750 |       |500 |       |
    |     |kg/t |    |    |       |    |       |    |       |    |       |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |     |Free | 91 |    |   107 |    |   60  |    |   90  |    |   33  |
    |     | g/L |    |    |       |    |       |    |       |    |       |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |Extraction,|    |            |            |            |            |
    |     %     |    |            |            |            |            |
    |___________|____|____________|____________|____________|____________|
    |  Si |     |  4 |    |    1  |    |    1  |    |    1  |    |    1  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Al |     | 29 |    |   17  |    |   16  |    |   15  |    |   14  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Fe |     | 35 |    |   37  |    |   34  |    |   34  |    |   33  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Mg |     | 28 |    |   42  |    |   41  |    |   38  |    |   49  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Ca |     | 54 |    |   45  |    |   36  |    |   39  |    |   33  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Na |     |  2 |    |    2  |    |    3  |    |    3  |    |    2  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |   K |     | 36 |    |   12  |    |   22  |    |   11  |    |   22  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Ti |     | 69 |    |   74  |    |   59  |    |   68  |    |   53  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |   P |     | 88 |    |   88  |    |   54  |    |   74  |    |   52  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Mn |     | 46 |    |   43  |    |   40  |    |   35  |    |   39  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Zr |     |  1 |    |    0  |    |    1  |    |    1  |    |    1  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Nb |     | 18 |    |   23  |    |   16  |    |   16  |    |   15  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  La |     | 97 |    |   95  |    |   92  |    |   93  |    |   91  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Ce |     | 97 |    |   96  |    |   93  |    |   94  |    |   92  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Pr |     | 96 |    |   96  |    |   93  |    |   94  |    |   92  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Nd |     | 94 |    |   96  |    |   93  |    |   94  |    |   92  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Sm |     | 86 |    |   95  |    |   93  |    |   93  |    |   92  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Eu |     | 79 |    |   94  |    |   92  |    |   93  |    |   92  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Gd |     | 74 |    |   95  |    |   94  |    |   94  |    |   93  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Tb |     | 66 |    |   95  |    |   93  |    |   93  |    |   92  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Dy |     | 61 |    |   94  |    |   93  |    |   93  |    |   92  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Ho |     | 58 |    |   93  |    |   92  |    |   92  |    |   91  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Er |     | 54 |    |   91  |    |   89  |    |   89  |    |   89  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Tm |     | 54 |    |   87  |    |   85  |    |   85  |    |   84  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Yb |     | 51 |    |   80  |    |   77  |    |   77  |    |   77  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Lu |     | 45 |    |   68  |    |   65  |    |   65  |    |   64  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |   Y |     | 64 |    |   92  |    |   90  |    |   91  |    |   90  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Sc |     |  7 |    |    3  |    |    2  |    |    2  |    |    2  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |   U |     | 22 |    |   62  |    |   62  |    |   60  |    |   61  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|
    |  Th |     | 80 |    |   97  |    |   96  |    |   97  |    |   94  |
    |_____|_____|____|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|____|_______|

AL = Atmospheric Leach, AB = Acid Bake, WL = Water Leach, Add = acid
added, Cons = acid consumed, Free = free acid in ~10% solids water
leach

The metallurgical extractions are excellent.  The direct acid leach
extractions were somewhat lower and produced slower solid/liquid
separations.  However, the acid bake and water leach results produced
very high extractions (viz. Nd is 91-96%, Tm is 84-87% and Dy is 92-94
%) with modest acid consumptions.  Zr and Nb extractions are low.  If
these elements are to be recovered from Foxtrot mineralization, it may
be necessary to re-leach the acid leach residue (possibly with
alkali).  Table 7 summarizes the leach solution compositions from the
screening tests.  The solutions are reasonably consistent in the REE
values and low in impurity content. These solutions must then be
treated for impurity removal and REE recovery as a mixed product for
separation and refining.

Table 7 – Solution Assays from Hydrometallurgical Leaching Tests on
Foxtrot Concentrates.


    Liquor, mg/L AL2  WL-AB4 WL-AB7 WL-AB8 WL-AB9

    Si           1190   192    229    223    227

    Al           911    580    578    578    530

    Fe           4550  4060   3860   3850   3750

    Mg            44     66     63     60     58

    Ca           3160  1680   1220   1480   1120

    Na            61     80     94    100     82

    K            911    328    705    308    713

    Ti           632    428    304    389    300

    P             75     34     17     29     16

    Mn           348    237    216    185    210

    Zr            18     11     43     39     35

    Nb            31     39     25     27     24

    La           488    430    404    397    400

    Ce           1060   947    890    875    887

    Pr           134    117    110    109    111

    Nd           482    442    407    406    409

    Sm            76     75     67     68     69

    Eu             4     4      4      4      4

    Gd            54     61     56     56     57

    Tb             7     10     9      9      8

    Dy            42     59     52     52     53

    Ho             8     12     10     10     10

    Er            21     32     28     29     27

    Tm             3     4      4      4      4

    Yb            18     24     21     22     21

    Lu             2     3      3      3      3

    Y            212    293    259    259    259

    Sc             0     0      0      0      0

    U              2     4      4      4      4

    Th            31     29     28     27     27

LEACH SOLUTION PURIFICATION AND RECOVERY OF MIXED REE PRODUCT

The leach solution purification involved simple pH adjustment to pH
3.0.  At this pH iron, aluminum, silica, titanium, phosphate,
zirconium, niobium and thorium are removed as a mixed hydroxide waste
precipitate.

After impurity precipitation, the solids were filtered and analyzed. The
remaining solution was then treated with oxalic acid at pH 2.0 to
precipitate the REE from solution. The form of the precipitate is as a
mixed REE oxalate.

The mixed REE oxalate was filtered and washed and analyzed. The
remaining solution was also analyzed.

The pH 3.0 precipitate contained 29.7% Fe, 1.78% Al, 2.51% Si, 2.54% Ti,
0.28% P, 0.30% Zr and 0.18% Nb.  The precipitate also contained small
amounts of Th and REE.  Analysis of the REE in the precipitate and the
loss due to co-precipitation is shown in Table 8.

Table 8 – Analysis of the Impurity Precipitate and Calculated Losses of
REE.

     ___________________________________________________________________
    |       |     Feed      |   Filtrate    |    Solid     |   Amount   |
    |Element|   Solution    |Analysis (mg/L)| Precipitate  |Precipitated|
    |       |Analysis (mg/L)|               |Analysis (ppm)|    (%)     |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   La  |         455   |         392   |        467   |      0.77  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Ce  |        1000   |         853   |       1280   |      0.96  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Pr  |         121   |         103   |        170   |      1.06  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Nd  |         437   |         374   |        687   |      1.18  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Sm  |         78    |        68.5   |        125   |      1.17  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Eu  |          4    |        3.39   |        6.3   |      1.19  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Gd  |         67    |        55.2   |       86.9   |      1.01  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Tb  |         11    |        8.73   |       14.5   |      1.07  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Dy  |         62    |        51.7   |       86.6   |      1.07  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Ho  |         12    |        9.99   |       16.8   |      1.08  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Er  |         33    |        27.4   |       49.9   |      1.17  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Tm  |          5    |        3.71   |        7.3   |      1.26  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Yb  |         25    |        20.9   |       49.2   |      1.50  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Lu  |          3    |        2.52   |        5.7   |      1.45  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |    Y  |         295   |         255   |        440   |      1.12  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |    U  |          4    |        2.59   |       78.2   |      16.4  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|
    |   Th  |         32    |        1.32   |       2020   |      90.9  |
    |_______|_______________|_______________|______________|____________|

Note:  Y analysis is still pending, but estimated at 1.12 % loss to
precipitate (average of Ho and Er).  Y solid analysis entered as
estimate using Nd analysis of precipitate as reference.

The final oxalate precipitate composition and associated recovery is
shown in Table 9.

Table 9 – Mixed Oxalate Precipitate of REE Recovered from Solution: 
Analysis and Recovery

     ___________________________________________________________________
    |Element|   |   Oxalate    |Oxide |Oxalate Precipitate|Recovery from|
    |       |   | Precipitate  |      |Analysis (% or ppm)|  Solution   |
    |       |   |Analysis (% or|      |                   |     (%)     |
    |       |   |     ppm)     |      |                   |             |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   La  | % |        7.8   |La2O3 |           9.15    |      99.96  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Ce  | % |       18.3   |Ce2O3 |          21.43    |      100.0  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Pr  | % |        2.1   |Pr6O11|           2.54    |      99.97  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Nd  | % |        8.7   |Nd2O3 |          10.15    |      99.98  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Sm  | % |       1.24   |Sm2O3 |           1.44    |      99.94  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Eu  |ppm|        759   |Eu2O3 |            879    |      99.12  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Gd  |ppm|      11600   |Gd2O3 |          13370    |      99.95  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Tb  |ppm|       1840   |Tb2O3 |           2164    |      99.66  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Dy  |ppm|      10600   |Dy2O3 |          12165    |      99.90  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Ho  |ppm|       2020   |Ho2O3 |           2314    |      99.80  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Er  |ppm|       5430   |Er2O3 |           6209    |      99.85  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Tm  |ppm|        735   |Tm2O3 |            839    |      98.92  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Yb  |ppm|       4240   |Yb2O3 |           4828    |      99.90  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Lu  |ppm|        499   |Lu2O3 |            567    |      98.81  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |    Y  |ppm|      50763   | Y2O3 |          64466    |      99.99  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |    U  |ppm|        5.5   | U3O8 |             6     |      23.17  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |   Th  |ppm|        282   | ThO2 |            321    |      97.73  |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |       |   |       LREO   |   %  |          44.70    |             |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |       |   |       HREO   |   %  |          10.78    |             |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|
    |       |   |       TREO   |   %  |          55.48    |             |
    |_______|___|______________|______|___________________|_____________|

Note:  Y analysis not available. Y solid analysis entered as estimate
using Nd analysis of precipitate as reference.

SUMMARY

The metallurgical process has been studied from initial recovery of a
REE concentrate, through extraction of REE into solution, followed by
purification of the solution and precipitation of a mixed REE product. 
The bench scale testing has been highly successful in producing a
concentrate, leaching to high efficiency, precipitating of impurities
(with negligible losses of REE) and finally precipitation of the mixed
product.

To summarize the results of the testing, the following table (Table 10)
calculates the overall recovery the Foxtrot sample to final mixed REE
product.

Table 10 – Calculation of Overall Recovery of REE into Final Mixed REE
Product

     ________________________________________________________________
    |      |Recovery to|  Leach   |  Loss to  |Precipitation|Overall |
    |Oxide |Concentrate|Extraction| Impurity  | Efficiency  |Recovery|
    |      |           | (Test 4) |Precipitate|with Oxalate |        |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |      |      (%)  |     (%)  |      (%)  |       (%)   |   (%)  |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Ce2O3 |    82.98  |   95.89  |     0.96  |     100.00  |  78.80 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Nd2O3 |    83.04  |   95.64  |     1.18  |      99.98  |  78.47 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    | Y2O3 |    83.71  |   92.48  |     1.12  |      99.99  |  76.54 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |La2O3 |    86.21  |   95.29  |     0.77  |      99.96  |  81.49 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Pr6O11|    86.56  |   95.79  |     1.06  |      99.97  |  82.01 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Sm2O3 |    84.32  |   94.70  |     1.17  |      99.94  |  78.88 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Eu2O3 |    83.73  |   94.28  |     1.19  |      99.12  |  77.31 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Gd2O3 |    82.65  |   95.30  |     1.01  |      99.95  |  77.93 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Tb2O3 |    82.38  |   94.69  |     1.07  |      99.66  |  76.91 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Dy2O3 |    81.36  |   94.21  |     1.07  |      99.90  |  75.76 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Ho2O3 |    81.59  |   93.31  |     1.08  |      99.80  |  75.15 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Er2O3 |    81.67  |   90.83  |     1.17  |      99.85  |  73.21 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Tm2O3 |    81.87  |   86.80  |     1.26  |      98.92  |  69.41 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Yb2O3 |    81.73  |   79.89  |     1.50  |      99.90  |  64.25 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|
    |Lu2O3 |    81.75  |   67.70  |     1.45  |      98.81  |  53.90 |
    |______|___________|__________|___________|_____________|________|

Note:  Overall Recovery = (Recovery to Concentrate) X (Leach Extraction)
X (1-Loss to Impurity Precipitate) X (Precipitation Efficiency with
Oxalate)

Exploration Program Update

The Port Hope Simpson REE District is 135 km long and 4 – 12 km wide,
consists of 4326 claims in 86 licenses, and occupies 1081 square
kilometres. There are a total of 11 REE prospects in the District,
including: Rock Rolling Hill, Rattling Bog Hill, Piperstock Hill,
Southern Shore, Toots Cove, Pesky Hill, HighREE Island, Foxtrot, Fox
Pond, Foxy Lady, and Ocean View. The Foxtrot Project, Fox Pond and Foxy
Lady prospects occur in the Fox Harbour mineralized belt. Piperstock
Hill, Southern Shore, Toots Cove and Pesky Hill occur in a 13 km
mineralized zone known as the HighREE Hills. The Ocean View Prospect
occurs in a 3 km mineralized zone known as the Ocean View mineralized
belt. The Fox Harbour, Ocean View and HighREE Hills mineralized zones
are considered very prospective for both HREE and LREE.

Qualified Person:

Dr. David Dreisinger, Ph.D., P.Eng., is the Company’s Vice President,
Metallurgy and Qualified Person for the purposes of NI 43-101. Dr.
Dreisinger has reviewed and approved the technical disclosure contained
in this news release as applicable. The company will endeavour to meet
high standards of integrity, transparency, and consistency in reporting
technical content, including geological and assay (e.g., REE) data.

About Search:
Search Minerals Inc. (TSXV: SMY) is a TSX Venture Exchange listed
company, headquartered in Vancouver, B.C. Search is the discoverer of
the Port Hope Simpson REE District, a highly prospective light and
heavy REE belt located in southeast Labrador where the company controls
a dominant land position in a belt 135km long and up to 12km wide. In
addition, Search has a number of other mineral prospects in its
portfolio located in Newfoundland and Labrador, including a number of
claims in the Strange Lake Complex, where Quest Rare Minerals has an
earn-in agreement with the Company; and at the Red Wine Complex, where
Great Western Minerals Group has a Joint Venture with the Company.

Furthermore, Search Minerals is the owner of patents relating to the
Starved Acid Leaching Technology (“SALT”), a process with the potential
to economically recover nickel and cobalt from known deposits currently
considered sub economic.

Search Minerals is led by a management team and Board of Directors with
a proven track record in the mining industry. The Company has
experienced geological and metallurgical teams led by Dr. Randy Miller
and Dr. David Dreisinger respectively.

All material information on the Company may be found on its website at www.searchminerals.ca and on SEDAR at sedar.com.

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

Cautionary Statement:
This news release contains forward-looking statements that are not
historical facts. Forward-looking statements involve risks,
uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results,
performance, prospects, and opportunities to differ materially from
those expressed or implied by such forward- looking statements. Factors
that could cause actual results to differ materially from these
forward- looking statements include those risks set out in Search’s
public documents filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Although Search believes that the assumptions and factors used in
preparing the forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance
should not be placed on these statements, which only apply as of the
date of this news release, and no assurance can be given that such
events will occur in the disclosed time frames or at all. Except where
required by law, Search disclaims any intention or obligation to update
or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new
information, future events or otherwise. 

 

 

 

 

 

SOURCE Search Minerals Inc.

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2012/05/09/20120509_C6074_DOC_EN_13509.pdf

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2012/05/09/20120509_C6074_DOC_EN_13510.pdf

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2012/05/09/20120509_C6074_DOC_EN_13511.pdf

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2012/05/09/20120509_C6074_DOC_EN_13512.pdf


Source: PR Newswire