Gib Hice (President)
Expertise in technical detail, patent-pending application status, historical and future application of methods and apparatus evolution of Hydro-Mining:

Tele: (541) 582-3880
Cell: (541) 291-0529
Fax: (541) 582-3880

Tom Hice,CPA
(Executive Vice-President)
Financial engineering expertise in fund raising, project development, mineral rights expansion, public marketing and equity building:

Tele: (541) 582-0803
Cell: (541) 621-2657
Fax: (541) 582-6052

Doug Devine (Vice President)
Expertise in advanced survey technology in satellite imagery, 3-D modeling, ultra-modern survey technology, and mapping development:

Tele: (541) 772-5777
Cell: (541) 944-1708


Hydro-Mining – The “Key” to Subterranean Wealth – Green Mining

Mining gold and other heavy valuables has not presented any impressive advancements since heap leaching became feasible in the 1970’s. Heap leaching is special as it targets micron gold with a new method of recovery that exposes vast new gold resources for chemical mining – although at great environmental impact and cost. But now, another special advancement in mining is ready to target vast new resources including gold, rare earths, gems and others (hereinafter “heavy or heavies”) using a non-chemical green mining technique sensitive to the environment – it is called “Hydro-Mining”.

“Hydro-Mining” is an eco-friendly drill-mining method and system that mines virgin ground at depths (hundreds of feet) never before touched. It is a minimally invasive geo-scopic process (analogous to arthroscopic surgery) and is the modern-day “key” to mining vast subterranean virgin resources while maintaining environmental integrity.

Technology Overview

This green mining process combines a sonic core-drilling rig with hi-tech specialized mining attachments (Hydro-Mining string) and processing equipment to transform the function of a sonic core-drilling rig into a modern jet-mining machine. Pulsed water jets create an underground cavity while lifting up suspended lighter slurry to the surface (process #1) and vortexing down larger heavies (e.g. gold nuggets as much as 8 inches wide) into a sump trap. The sonic core barrel is then used to recover the heavies (process #2). Backfilling the cavity completes the process.

Consider this example - a mining cavity is created in placer 150 feet down just above bedrock and 3 feet in height, 30 feet in diameter, and it took one 10 hour shift with three operators. This equates to mining 78.5 cubic yards of virgin ground in 10 hours with minimal environmental disturbance. If each cubic yard paid 4.0 grams (a little more than 1/10 of an ounce) of gold, more than 10 ounces could be recovered in one 10 hour shift. That’s $10,000 per shift at $1,000 per ounce gold. What if the virgin ground was paying 1 ounce per cubic yard? Recovery is 78.5 ounces per one 10 hour shift or $78,500 (A recovery of over $2m per month per one shift per day!)

Patent Credibility

The profit expectations are staggering since almost all Hydro-Mining will be in virgin ground with more than an ounce per cubic yard not that uncommon. The question is – can this really work? An expert at the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) relates, yes!

Two extensive patents (26 claims in total) that describe Hydro-Mining’s apparatus and methods using acoustically pulsed energy to mine valuable subsurface resources - have been allowed by the USPTO for licensing, even without a prototype. The expert examined the extensive documentation and evidence and cross-referenced more than 2.5m possible conflict hits and concluded that Hydro-Mining is new, useful, and operative which satisfies the condition for patenting.

It should be noted that an “idea or concept” is not a patentable item; accordingly, these patents are a tangible innovative adaption of borehole mining – a proven drill-mining process designed for recovery of difficult and heavy materials. These are very strong patents that overcome the heavy recovery problem and as such are much more than an idea or concept. It is a new mining process and the beginning of an impressive green mining industry.

Financial Model

A fitting financial model has also been designed for this upstart industry using good mining and business practices to insure an aggressive focus on profit motives by:

  1. Establishing a parent company to develop, manage and research to achieve goals.

  2. Exploring and cataloging measured resources for current and future Hydro-Mining projects.

  3. Financing Hydro-Mining units for ownership and royalty payments from each unit.

  4. Sale/leasing the financed units to independent operators to mine measured resources.

  5. Subdue competition and move rapidly on mineral rights acquisitions.

  6. Being the first on an imminent “gold rush” for economic sub-surface mineral rights.

The financial model is based on a “franchise mining concept” - the real gold mine! Discussion follows.

The Franchise Mining Concept and Its Application to Hydro-Mining

There are many virgin Hydro-mining targets throughout the world. Some are well documented and others have only a good story but all will require a location study to determine Hydro-Mining potential. It’s much like a fast food franchise checking traffic flow to determine if a franchise at that location will pay. Franchise mining requires the same type of checking, through sampling, by a sonic drill called a Beta Unit. When a Beta Unit discovers a possible location for Hydro-Mining, the location is called an Alpha location. After acceptance of the Alpha location and its measured resources capable of paying for a Beta Unit conversion to an Alpha Unit by adding ancillary mining attachments, a Hydro-Mining franchise is created. The Alpha Unit becomes the franchise financed by an IPO and paid for by the resources of the Alpha location. Each Beta Unit location identifying an Alpha location can create a Hydro-Mining franchise (Alpha Unit) for sale/lease.

The Hydro-Mining Franchisor

There are several criteria used to judge the success of a franchise. The single most important is strength of management. Management in this franchise model is centralized in “Hice Exploration and Royalty Corporation (HERC)” an Alaska corporation – the “franchisor”. To begin with, HERC will raise $4m in convertible debt for funding the startup structure and a Beta Unit:

  • Step #1 – the setup:
  • 1) Purchase sonic drill and ancillary equipment for Alpha and Beta Testing - $1.8m. (2) Provide working capital and crew for on-site Beta testing - $300k. (3) Begin IPO registration for Regulation A+ Tier II raise for $50m - (cost=)$1.0m. (4) Form public limited partnership to acquire and hold mineral rights - $300k. (5) Provide insurance alternative for seed capital investors - $200k. (6) Administration, legal, patent assignments, other - $400k. Total $4m convertible to common stock.

  • Step #2 – locating Hydro-Mining Sites:

  • There are many locations throughout the USA having indicated or inferred resources that are uneconomical to mine using traditional methods. These locations may be Hydro-Mined; but, will require Beta Unit testing dependent on mineral rights negotiations by a Limited Partnership (LP). On acceptance, HERC will schedule Beta Unit testing to identify measured resources for a possible Alpha location.

  • Step #3 – the Hydro-Mining franchise:

  • Any Alpha location (or combination of several locations) having an acceptable resource target will justify a Hydro-Mining franchise with an Alpha Unit conversion. Individual crew employees working on the Beta Unit may be offered the opportunity to be franchise owners/operators and may purchase the franchise subject to financing by the IPO.

    The Hydro-Mining Franchisee

    The Beta Unit crew are individuals that are trained by HERC and deployed with a Beta Unit. Crew members interested in the franchise opportunity will be given a franchise contract to review prior to training (Federal Trade Commission requirement). A crew member satisfying HERC’s observations for management skills, ethical poise, and work ethic may become the “franchisee” on acceptance for sale/leasing an Alpha Unit by the IPO established by HERC. The “franchisee” will purchase/lease the Alpha Unit for $5m paying a minimum of $150k/month for three years. The IPO will pay HERC $3.4m for conversion netting HERC $500k per Alpha Unit. The IPO will net $1.6m per conversion on the sale/lease. At least 10 conversions will be targeted per year.

    Seed Capital Investment

    This IPO model can be initiated for $4m ($500k minimum per investor) from investor’s seed capital (convertible debt - within 24 months to 20% voting common in HERC); or, an alternative model for prototype development can be initiated for $5m and 30% conversion. The prototype model will be in production within a year with gold paying for IPO offering and seed capital payouts or stock conversions. There are other unique advantages to this prototype development model that should be discussed.

    Investors will also hold individual equity in the LP and stock equity in the IPO. Debt secured by HERC corporate assets, or, a unique offer in charitable tax deductions. Exit strategy in five years when IPO exercises option to purchase HERC for $100m(+).

    There are thousands of locations for Alpha Unit conversions and we have the “patents”.