Miners drilling for lithium in Cornwall have instead found rich seams of copper and tin.
Cornish Metals Inc has been exploring for tin at the United Downs site near Redruth and has now reported that it has found multiple “zones” of the minerals. It has identified at least five new zones and said they extend at least 750m down.
The discovery comes after another firm, Cornish Lithium, drilled at the site in early 2020 looking for lithium, a metal used in batteries and expected to become much sought after as the UK and other nations switch from petrol and diesel to electric vehicles.
The two holes drilled to test for lithium in underground heated saltwater actually discovered new zones of copper and tin.
Richard Williams, chief executive of Cornish Metals, said:“This drilling has identified at least five new zones of copper and/or tin mineralisation that have not previously been recognised.”
He added: “These results add further confidence to the exploration potential at United Downs between and beneath the former copper producing United Mines and Great Consolidated Mines.”
Cornish Metals, formerly known as Strongbow Exploration Inc, bought the South Crofty tin and United Downs copper and tin projects, plus additional mineral rights in Cornwall, in July 2016.
The additional mineral rights cover an area of about 15,000 hectares