MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Oct. 13, 2009) - Big Red Diamond Corporation ("Big Red") (TSX VENTURE:DIA) is pleased to announce that a 648 line-kilometre magnetometer and spectrometer airborne survey has commenced on its 100% owned Rare Earth Property in Quebec. The property consists of 88 claims covering a surface area of approximately 4,712 hectares and is located 52 kilometres north west of Sept-Iles, Quebec. G.D.S. Geo Data Solutions Inc. of Laval, Quebec has been engaged to perform the survey.
The demand for rare-earth elements (REEs) is rapidly increasing, due to many new applications for them in emerging green technologies. This demand, along with heavy reliance of the world on supply from a single country (China) is fueling a new peak in exploration. Airborne geophysics plays a vital role in exploration for REEs, through the techniques of gamma-ray spectrometry (GRS) and magnetometry. GRS detects three naturally occurring isotopes, of potassium, thorium and uranium, which are typical indicators of the presence of REEs.
The earliest source of REEs was unconsolidated material rich in monazite. Monazite is a phosphate that bears thorium as well as REEs, and surficial material rich in monazite typically provides a strong signal to GRS.
From the 1960s to the 1990s, most of the world's production of REEs came from a carbonatite at Mountain Pass, CA. Airborne geophysics can be effective for delineating carbonatites, as they are often magnetic as well as rich in potassium and, occasionally, thorium and uranium.
Chinese production of REEs comes from unconsolidated material, but primarily from the Bayan Obo deposit. According to the USGS(1), the Bayan Obo deposit "has affinities both to carbonatite REE deposits and to hydrothermal iron-oxide (-Cu-Au-REE) deposits, such as Olympic Dam, Australia and Kiruna, Sweden."; Olympic Dam is enriched in uranium, and Kiruna is a classic magnetic orebody.
In summary, GRS can directly detect the REE mineral monazite, and with magnetometry is useful for delineating geological features that have been the source for most of the REEs mined to date. The airborne survey presently undertaken by Big Red will be able to detect REEs on the property. The presence of REEs in the area is already established from previous work reported by SOQUEM.
(1) U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 087-02 (http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2002/fs087-02/)
This press release was reviewed by Clinton Barr, P.Geo, a Qualified Person as defined by NI 43-101.
About Big Red Diamond Corp:
Big Red Diamond Corp is a junior exploration company active in the West Timmins Gold camp and the Attawapiskat joint venture diamond properties surrounding DeBeers Victor diamond mine.
This press release may contain forward-looking statements that are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to vary materially from targeted results. Such risks and uncertainties include those described in Big Red's periodic reports including the annual report or in the filings made by Big Red from time to time with securities regulatory authorities.Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.