The inferred graphite resource at Caula stood at five million tonnes at 13% total graphitic carbon for 70,600t based on earlier work, but 11 more recent holes have enabled Mustang to increase the total resource estimate to 21.9Mt at 13.4% TGC for 2.9Mt using an 8% cut-off.
The entire resource is also now in the inferred category.
Metallurgical testwork confirms "exceptional" quality graphite with more than 63% of cumulative proportion in large to super jumbo flakes sizes of greater than 180μm and concentrate grades of more than 97% TGC.
As with the maiden vanadium resource, which stands at 22Mt at 0.37% vanadium pentoxide for a total 81,600t, Caula is divided across oxide and fresh ores. The oxide zone contains around 1.13t of contained graphite and the fresh zone about 1.8Mt.
And, as with the vanadium, Mustang sees it has "substantial scope for further growth" by investing in exploration drilling.
The company has a two-step flowsheet that will allow extraction of both graphite and vanadium in a simple process that should offer lower costs than more traditional and complex titaniferous magnetite ore bodies.
Mustang believes it can fast-tracked development of Caula, although delays in receiving the final vanadium and graphite assay results from the independent laboratory means that the estimated completion of the scoping study will be pushed back to later this quarter.
In recent weeks Mustang merged its disappointing Montepuez ruby business with TSXV-listed Fura Gems in return for A$10 million worth of shares to be paid out over the next 20 months. It will give Mustang an 8% stake in Fura and exposure to a planned $25 million gemstone exploration program over the next three years.
Mustang shares spiked again on the news, up 15.7% to 2.2c, building on the gains associated with the vanadium resource, coming off a 52-week low of 1.5c recently. While it is still off its high of 19.8c, just prior to the first ruby auction, its market capitalisation is now above $20 million again.