Alaska copper-zinc developer NovaCopper has more rich intercepts to add to the resource at its Arctic deposit in Alaska’s Ambler mining district.
The 14-hole diamond drill program, which yielded 3,056 metres of core, was designed to test the continuity of mineralization as well as upgrade resources from inferred to measured and indicated categories within the proposed Arctic open pit.
Based on a cut-off grade of 1% copper, all 14 holes intersected significant copper, gold, silver, lead and zinc mineralization. Highlights include:
- AR15-0145 intersected four mineralized intervals, including 22 meters of 3.86% copper, 0.86 g/t gold, 71.0 g/t silver, 1.15% lead, and 5.36% zinc, and 5 meters of 3.82% copper, 0.68 g/t gold, 74.7 g/t silver, 1.60% lead, and 7.21% zinc, and 6.5 meters of 6.67% copper, 0.52 g/t gold, 31.4 g/t silver, 0.20% lead, and 3.38% zinc;
- AR15-0136 intersected two mineralized intervals, including 32 meters of 3.08% copper, 1.56 g/t gold, 45.9 g/t silver, 0.18% lead, and 2.72% zinc, and 9 meters of 7.36% copper, 2.34 g/t gold, 219.3 g/t silver, 0.77% lead, and 5.00% zinc;
- AR15-0138 intersected 18 meters of 4.93% copper, 0.74 g/t gold, 102.0 g/t silver, 0.94% lead, and 5.11% zinc;
- AR15-0144 intersected three mineralized intervals, including 11 meters of 7.10% copper, 0.70 g/t gold, 80.4 g/t silver, 1.09% lead, and 9.04% zinc, and 9 meters of 4.22% copper, 0.75 g/t gold, 76.7 g/t silver, 0.82% lead, and 3.46% zinc.
“We are pleased to have completed another successful drill campaign, one that saw Zero Loss Time Incidents (LTI’s), no environmental incidents, 56% local NANA shareholder hire and some really fantastic drill results that further demonstrate that the Arctic deposit is one of the highest-grade, open pitable copper deposits known in the world,” stated Rick Van Nieuwenhuyse, NovaCopper’s President and Chief Executive Officer.
The drilling, engineering and environmental work completed as part of the 2015 field program will support a pre-feasibility study to be completed over the next two to three years.
NovaCopper has some of the highest copper grades of any major undeveloped project, globally, at its Arctic deposit. The company has a partnership with NANA, a business-friendly Alaska Native Corporation, and a division of the Alaska government is looking at building a toll road from the mine to the coast.
The Bornite project 25 kilometres away from Arctic adds additional stores of high-grade copper and zinc, as well as plenty of exploration upside.
“In addition to the exceptional copper grades, the zinc and precious metals credits will provide the Company additional flexibility as we advance this project up the value chain. Overall, it was an excellent field season and we look forward to improving our geological understanding of the high-grade polymetallic Arctic deposit and incorporating this year’s data into our models and future pre-feasibility level work.”
NovaCopper had cash and equivalents of US$18.4 million as of Aug. 31, and a current market cap of about $52 million CDN, or about US$40 million.
Colombian copper-gold explorer Cordoba Minerals has added to its land position at the San Matias project in northwestern Colombia with a deal backed by mining entrepreneur Robert Friedland.
Cordoba is optioning the Alacran copper-gold project, a largely untested area that CEO Mario Stifano believes has potential to host a large-scale copper resource, from Sociedad Ordinaria de Minas Omni (OMNI). Alacran is within tenure of Cordoba’s San Matias, about 2km southwest of the company’s Montiel discovery and 2km west of Costa Azul.
Over 13,000 metres of diamond drilling has been carried out, with highlights including 139 metres of 1.23% Cu and 0.74 g/t Au, 188 metres of 0.71% Cu and 0.25 g/t Au and 128 metres of 0.84% Cu and 0.45 g/t Au.
Most of the intersected mineralization has only been tested to an average vertical depth of 150 metres, with the deepest intersections only 240 metres below surface. Mineralization is traced over a strike length of greater than 1,300 metres.
“The acquisition of the Alacran Project is an important step forward for Cordoba as it adds another high-quality project to our portfolio of copper-gold exploration assets in Colombia,” Stifano said.
Cordoba will pay $500,000 initially and a further $1.25 million in payments on the 2-year anniversaries of signing a binding letter of intent and a definitive agreement. A 3,000-metre drill program will begin within 90 days and 8,000 metres of drilling will have to be completed within 2 years of signing the LOI.
The agreement also includes a US$14-million payment upon receipt of all licenses and permits for the construction and operation of a commercial mine at Alacran, as well as a 2% NSR.
The deal will be financed through a $1.6-million private placement of 13,333,333 common shares at 12 cents a share subscribed to by Friedland’s privately owned High Power Exploration (HPX). HPX became a major shareholder of Cordoba in May following Cordoba CEO Mario Stifano’s elevator pitch to Friedland at the 2014 BMO mining conference (story here).
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