SANTIAGO, Chile, June 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- White Mountain Titanium Corporation ("White Mountain" or the "Company") (OTC Bulletin Board: WMTM) reports that, as part of its on-going commitment to metals research, it has received a second quarterly progress report since licensing a new titanium metal technology (the "Chinuka Process") in September, 2010. The report was made by Professor Derek Fray who is directing lab scale test work on the Chinuka Process at the University of Cambridge in the UK.
During the second quarter, research continued to examine the refining and electrolytic deposition of pure titanium metal from Ultra-fine rutile concentrate feedstock sourced from the Company's Cerro Blanco project in Chile, the improvement of overall process recovery and the optimization of cell voltage and current density. Preliminary results from this test work indicate that the residual oxygen content in titanium sponge metal deposited from molten salts using the Chinuka Process is approximately 1 wt%. This reported weight per cent figure represents an average for several test runs completed during the second quarter. Based on these results, an examination of the potential use of final acid leaching to lower oxygen content further to approximately 0.5 wt% (a commercial weight per cent specification for sheet rolled titanium metal) was initiated and continued into the current quarter.
In addition to examining acid leaching of titanium sponge metal, research during the current quarter will start to focus on the adaptability of the Chinuka Process. The first test work will examine the possible production of titanium metal powder (a higher value product than titanium sponge metal). This will be followed by an examination into the possible utilization of lower grade rutile and ilmenite concentrates as the process feedstock. Ilmenite is the most common form of titanium concentrate, however many ilmenites have impurities which preclude their use in paint and pigment applications.