UK-based Sunrise Resources Plc is a mineral exploration and development company with projects ranging from Australia, to Canada, and Finland. The company is developing the Derryginagh barytes project on the south-west coast of Ireland in Cork.
Barytes, known as tiff in the area around Potosi, Missouri in the US, is the mineral form of barium sulphate (BaSO4). It has a high specific gravity of 4.5g/cm3 and a hardness of 3.0-3.5 on the Mohs scale.
Global production of barytes is about 7.8m tonnes of which 84% is used in the oil industry, 7% is used in chemical industries (electronics, glass, ceramics and medical applications), and 9% is used in fillers (paint industry, car, and radiation shielding), according to the Barytes Association.
The project is a previously producing mine that operated in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and produced barytes for the paint industry.