Located in Saskatchewan, Canada, the Athabasca Basin hosts the highest grade uranium deposits in the world. The basin accounts for 15% of global uranium production. Canada (and Saskatchewan) is a geopolitically stable, proven mining jurisdiction with significant infrastructure already in place.
Athabasca 2.0 refers to basement-hosted Uranium deposits, as opposed to the conventional unconformity-type deposits in the basin.
Basement-hosted deposits have significant advantages over the traditional unconformity-type deposits.
- Simpler Geology
- More competent rock
- Easy mineability
- Examples: Arrow, Rabbit Lake, Eagle Point
Traditional unconformity-type deposits have:
- Complex Geology
- Incompetent rock
- Mining engineering challenges
- Deeper mines require freezing
- High CAPEX
- Examples: McArthur River, Cigar Lake
High-grade deposits in the Athabasca are lower-cost operations compared to alternative jurisdictions (i.e. USA).
The average grade in the basin is ~3.95% U3O8, while the rest of the world averages ~0.15%. To put into context, 1% U3O8 is equivalent to 22.86 grams per tonne gold ($1,500/oz gold and $50/lb uranium).
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