To help identify the surface expressions of deeply buried unconformity-type uranium deposits, in 2009 the Corporation and the QFIR entered into a collaborative research study with AREVA Resources Canada Inc. (AREVA). The proposal involved conducting a multifaceted surface geochemical survey over part of the Cigar Lake uranium deposit (Cigar West Survey). The Cigar Lake deposit is on the Waterbury/Cigar uranium property, a joint venture partnership between Cameco Corporation, AREVA, Idemitsu Kosan Co. Ltd., and Tokyo Electric Power Co. [TEPCO] located in the Athabasca Basin, Saskatchewan. The Cigar Lake uranium deposit has a reported resource of 209.3 million pounds U3O8 grading 17.04% U3O8 (Source: Cameco website).
The compilation and evaluation of the analytical results from the Cigar West Survey determined that the highest concentration of classic Athabasca unconformity-related uranium pathfinder elements and distinctive isotopes (such as radiogenic lead (Pb) isotopic ratios (207Pb/206Pb)) occur proximal to the surface projection of the known high-grade Cigar West uranium deposit. This research has clearly identified distinctive elements and isotopic compositions that have been mobilized from that deposit to the surface media through about 450 meters of sandstone. The results of this survey will provide new technologies for rapidly evaluating the possibilities of targets in underexplored areas within the Athabasca Basin and other frontier regions.