Elementos (ASX: ELT) has secured 154 square kilometres of exploration permits at the Millenium Project in the mineral-rich Mt Isa region, near to Xstrata's (LSE: XTA) Ernest Henry copper, gold and magnetite mine.
The tenements are located on a major mineralised trend, known as the Corella Fault zone, in close proximity to the Rockland, Roseby and Dugald River deposits.
The Mt Isa mineral province has established mining, processing and transportation infrastructure in close proximity to the major regional centres of Mt Isa and Cloncurry.
Elementos plans to explore the four permits for copper, cobalt, gold and rare earth elements mineralisation, similar to that already discovered in the five existing mining leases.
While little modern exploration has been undertaken on the exploration permits, extensive exploration has been undertaken on the five mining leases, which are subject to an option-to-purchase agreement with Forte Energy.
The Millenium permits host a number of historical copper mine workings and prospects that were operated at around the turn of the century.
The Federal mine exploited copper in bornite and chalcopyrite down to 135 metres and produced some 10,000 tonnes of ore at very high grades of 25% copper.
Other workings along a shear "lode" structure were less successful for copper mining, but the lodes were noted to be rich in cobalt.
Between 1964 and 1991 several companies, including Carpentaria Exploration Company, Tasman Minerals and Murchison United, explored the district with trenching and limited drill programs targeting both copper and cobalt mineralisation.
A best intersection of 10.7 metres at 2,333 parts per million cobalt and 2.02% copper was returned confirming the thickness of the cobalt mineralisation.
In 2010 and 2011 Elementos completed a number of outcrop sampling programs to study the areas historically mined and drilled.
Copper, cobalt, gold and other metallic anomalies were identified along the trend of the Corella structure, including the zone of historic drilling.
The soil survey extended the apparent footprint of the mineralisation 1,500 metres north to the limit of the mining leases, apparently extending into the new granted exploration permits.
Rare earth elements and yttrium have also been identified in check-assays of rock-chip surface samples.
Total rare earth anomalies of up to 0.17% were identified in multiple samples from oxidised surface outcrops and shallow historic trenching.
The average anomaly over 36 samples of varied composition and distribution was greater than 400 parts per million.
Elementos is planning to undertake ground-magnetometry geophysical surveys of the Corella structure, including the cobalt and copper anomalies already identified.
The company will also begin drilling to confirm the cobalt and copper grades from historical drill holes, as well as test for the presence of rare earth elements and yttrium.
Elementos is working towards the consolidation of its land package in the Mt Isa district.
The company is currently awaiting the granting of a further 167 square kilometres of exploration permits and the exercise of the option-to-purchase agreement with Forte Energy.
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