Polymetals Mining (ASX: PLY) has completed its first program of exploration work at the Turner River Gold Project in northwest Western Australia with promising results that have prompted the immediate move to begin a Scoping Study.
Geological mapping and surface sampling assays from the Wingina Well prospect indicate the potential for repetition of high grade shoots along strike in areas only sparsely drilled.
Best results were 4 metres at 11.66 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from 12 metres, including 2 metres at 22.87g/t gold from 14 metres; and 7 metres at 0.73g/t gold from 3 metres.
Polymetals has also completed 1,948 metres of reverse circulation percussion and 860 metres of diamond core drilling over the Wingina Well prospect since November 2012.
Drill holes were targeted for resource extension and representative geotechnical and metallurgical testing sampling of the deposit.
Best results from drilling were:
- 4 metres at 2.65g/t gold from 125 metres;
- 13 metres at 1.67g/t gold from 197 metres;
- 3 metres at 2.37g/t gold from 89 metres;
- 11.67 metres at 2.22g/t gold from 70.9 metres;
- 26.05 metres at 4.01g/t gold from 18.05 metres; and
- 10.3 metres at 1.68g/t gold from 20.5 metres.
The drilling results confirm the tenor and location of mineralised horizons in the core of the deposit and the surface sampling assays will increase confidence in the resource estimate in the upper part of the orebody.
Assays so far indicate a possible extension of two separate gold resource envelopes and the recognition of six, northeast-plunging high grade gold zones within a strike length of the host chert horizon that spans at least 1.5 kilometres.
Frank Terranova, chief executive officer, said the Turner River project added an exciting growth opportunity to the company's growing suite of projects.
"Turner River is a highly prospective and underexplored region. The results indicate a significant gold deposit; the proximity of the Base Metals project offers additional near term value potential.
"Polymetals prides itself on developing projects efficiently and quickly. An accelerated Scoping Study is the natural next step and will be complemented by ongoing exploration activities across the gold and base metal projects."
Further assays are expected over the coming weeks and more drilling at Wingina Well is planned following the cessation of the wet season.
The recognition of the structural geometry giving rise to high grade gold mineralisation will assist in improving exploration drill targeting for further economic lenses of mineralisation.
Scoping Study specifics
A Scoping Study into the Turner River Project will be conducted in the first half of 2013.
The study will consider heap leaching and carbon in leach processing of the ore from the Wingina Well, Amanda and Mt Berghaus prospects.
Any plant design and capital works will factor in the possible synergies through potential additional base metal recovery from the Discovery and Orchard Tank deposits.
Geotechnical assessment of Wingina Well drill core has been conducted by AMC Consultants, and metallurgical testing samples have been despatched to ALS Metallurgy Sydney for a comprehensive testing program to assess heap leaching and CIP processing options.
Preliminary open pit optimisation work by AMDAD has indicated economic mining development scenarios for Wingina Well, Amanda and the Mt Berghaus gold deposits, as well as the Discovery and Orchard Tank base metal deposits.
Further work will be undertaken with a revised resource model to finalise these assessments as part of the Scoping Study.
Turner River back story
Polymetals acquired the Turner River Project, which comprises both a gold project and a base metals project, through the acquisition of Lansdowne Resources in September 2012.
The project is located about 60 kilometres south of Port Hedland within a granite-greenstone terrane of the Archaean-Proterozoic Pilbara Craton of Western Australia.
These assets offer Polymetals near-term production potential from the existing 6.72 million tonnes at 1.38g/t for 298,000 gold ounce resource at the gold project, and the base metals project resource of 3.1 million tonnes at 2.36% zinc, 0.97% lead, 82g/t silver and 0.65g/t gold.
Resources at the Wingina Well prospect have been estimated at 5.1 million tonnes at 1.34g/t for 220,000 ounces of gold, and is the initial focus of exploration with the objective to rapidly progress the project to a development decision.
The tenements of the Turner River Base Metals project lie 5.3 kilometres northeast of the gold project tenements.
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