Property Location Map

Clayton Valley Lithium


Nickel Rock  is focused on locating commercially important groundwater deposits enriched in dissolved lithium on their Clayton Valley project at Silver Peak, near Tonopah, Nevada.


Silver Peak is one of the oldest mining areas in Nevada. The town site was established in 1864 due to a hot spring that was in the area. In 1948 a fire burned the town of Silver Peak and after that there was little activity until 1966, when the Foote Mineral Company started its lithium extracting operations in nearby Clayton Valley.

Located contiguous and adjacent to Nickel Rock Mineral’s Clayton Valley Project, the Silver Peak Lithium Brine Mine and Processing Facility has been in production since 1966 using traditional evaporation pond technology. Albemarle Corporation purchased the mine as part of its acquisition of Rockwood Lithium that closed in early 2015. The United States Geological Survey estimates that over 300 million pounds of lithium carbonate have been produced at this facility since 1964.


In Clayton Valley all producing lithium brine deposits share a number of first-order characteristics: (1) arid climate; (2) closed basin containing a playa or salar; (3) tectonically driven subsidence; (4) associated igneous or geothermal activity; (5) suitable lithium source-rocks; (6) one or more adequate aquifers; and (7) sufficient time to concentrate a brine.

The general structure of the producing area of the north part of the Clayton Valley basin is known from geophysical surveys and drilling to be a graben structure with its most down-dropped portion the east-northeast side of the basin along the extension of the Paymaster Canyon Fault and Angel Island Fault (Zampirro, 2004).

Exploration Potential

A similar graben structure has been identified on the property of Nickel Rock Minerals in the north part of the Clayton Valley basin where the Goat Island graben is inferred from gravity inversion (Quantec, 2008; Petrick, 2008).  The valley is segmented into a northerly-trending, 1-2 km-wide sub-basin with a distinct escarpment on each side caused by the displacement of a block of land downward.

Within the graben and within the boundary of the claim block, a drill hole by Western Geothermal Partners 2007 logged as WGP#2 reported as follows: “From 280 – to 305 ft., fine grained green sand and silt logged as volcanic ash was encountered. This unit may be correlative to the Main Ash Aquifer, which is a marker bed in other areas of the Clayton Valley Basin.”

Nickel Rock Minerals is planning a detailed exploration program on the Clayton Valley/ Silver Peak property in 2021.

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