Feb 5, 2021

Impala Canada is investing $375,000 to help establish a new industrial research chair in mineral exploration at Lakehead University. This investment acted as a catalyst to secure additional funding from the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and Lakehead University for a total commitment of $2.15 million, to advance research outcomes and strategic goals through the Lakehead Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Mining & Exploration. Dr. Peter Hollings, the current chair of Lakehead University’s Department of Geology, will be named the new NOHFC Industrial Research Chair in Mineral Exploration.

“Exploration is the lifeline of the mining industry, and finding new, economically viable mineral deposits opens the door to generations of jobs, investment and community development opportunities,” said Tim Hill, Chief Executive Officer, Impala Canada. “We are proud to co-invest in this industrial research chair and partner in the world-class research led by Dr. Peter Hollings at Lakehead University.”

The Impala Canada contribution goes beyond the financial investment. To support the research into the metallogenesis of Nickel-Copper-Platinum Group Metal deposits and prospects in the Thunder Bay area, the Company’s geology team will work collaboratively with the researchers and provide in-field support. Dr. Hollings and his team will have unparalleled access to the geological database at Impala Canada’s Lac Des Iles Mine and regional exploration properties, a database that is several orders of magnitude greater than most academic-based geoscientific projects.

The LDI Mine and regional exploration projects will become in-field research hubs for faculty, graduates and undergraduates in their quest to better understand the magmatic system that gave rise to the palladium deposits at LDI and other prospects in the region. Lac des Iles is a ‘one-of-a-kind’ deposit that is now a mine that has been operating for over 25 years and today is one of the largest and safest underground mines in Canada. A mine that attracted a $1 Billion investment from Implats, one of the world’s foremost producers of platinum group metals. And a mine that is one of only two primary palladium producers in the world; a metal that contributes to a cleaner global environment.

The funding partners share the same vision: to unlock mineral resources with the same potential as LDI, becoming major operations in the Thunder Bay mining district, responsibly mining nickel, copper and platinum group metals – essential for the world’s transition to a green energy future.

“Investing in job creation and research and development at Lakehead University will help drive new solutions and support our government’s commitment to grow the province’s mineral exploration and prospecting industry,” said Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines. “Through this project, we have the potential to attract new investments into the region and drive more economic opportunities here in Northwestern Ontario.”

"Really excited to be starting my new role as the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation Industrial Research Chair in Mineral Exploration. Thanks to amazing support from NOHFC, Impala Canada Ltd and NSERC this $2.1 million, 5 year Chair will allow us to build an outstanding team of Researchers working on Ni-Cu-PGE mineralization here in Northern Ontario. Can't wait to get started!" said Lakehead professor Peter Hollings. 

Tags: Northern Ontario / Government / Gold / All Articles