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Tasman Resources, Rio Tinto Intercept Thick, Low Grade IOCGU Mineralisation At Vulcan

Tasman Resources (ASX: TAS) has confirmed thick, low grade iron-oxide copper-gold-uranium in the fourth hole drilled under the Tasman/Rio Tinto (ASX: RIO) Joint Venture at the Vulcan Project in South Australia.

The hole intersected over 517 metres of very strong IOCGU-style alteration, dominated by minerals which characterise IOCGU ore deposits such as BHP Billiton's (ASX: BHP) Olympic Dam.

Vulcan is located around 30 kilometres north of Olympic Dam.

The hole was aimed at further evaluating the eastern end of the large gravity anomaly on the southern part of Vulcan.

Highlights included 517.7 metres at 0.15% copper, 0.04 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 25 parts per billion palladium from 819.7 metres.

Included within this interval were a number of higher grade zones such as:

- 11.3 metres at 0.38% copper, 0.22g/t gold and 35 parts per billion palladium from 819.7 metres;
- 77 metres at 0.26% copper, 0.05g/t gold and 20 parts per billion palladium from 916 metres, including 4 metres at 1.36% copper and 0.33g/t gold; and
- 85 metres at 0.22% copper, 0.06g/t gold and 45 parts per billion palladium from 1,068 metres.

The most recent hole has only intersected the extreme northern fringe of the main geophysical gravity target at the southern part of Vulcan and is comparable to the results of the previous hole.

The hematite-rich breccias intersected in the third and fourth holes appear to strongly resemble those described as the main host rocks at Olympic Dam.

The task still remains to find where this very large system, with an aerial extent of around 12 square kilometres, has concentrated the copper, gold and uranium normally associated with these IOCGU geological processes.

To date 5,172 metres of the current 12,000 metre Tasman/Rio Tinto Joint Venture program have been completed, and drilling is scheduled to resume in mid-March 2013.

Tasman is managing the initial exploration program for the joint venture, which Rio Tinto is funding with a $10 million payment.


Today's assay results are notable for not only the thicknesses but also a number of higher grade zones down hole.

The composition of the rocks is also dominated by minerals which characterise IOCGU ore deposits such as Olympic Dam; in particular, sericite, hematite, carbonate, and chlorite.

Most importantly, although the tenor is low grade overall, these results and the relatively marginal location of the drill holes, provide a significant boost to the overall prospectivity of Vulcan hosting a major IOCGU ore deposit, particularly within this southern part. Finding a major IOCGU deposit takes time and patience.

Importantly, as with the results from the previous drill hole, the fourth drill hole does indeed offer more encouragement that Vulcan can host a major IOCGU deposit. The recent pull-back in valuation offers investors a re-entry point.

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