Auroch strikes massive nickel sulphides outside resource as Saints project shows potential
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Auroch Minerals looks to have bridged a gap in the 21,400t nickel resource at its Saints project near Kalgoorlie, with drilling hitting massive sulphides in extensions outside the main resource.
The main focus of the major diamond drill program at Saints was to infill the existing resource ahead of a scoping study – so the discovery of massive nickel sulphides outside its 1.02Mt at 2% resource model will be music to the ears of Auroch Minerals’ (ASX:AOU) geologists.
Both holes SNDD021 and SNDD022 struck the basal nickel sulphides on the basal contact in the Saint Patricks channel, hitting 3.01m of massive sulphides (the best kind) from 177.08m in the SNDD021 and 0.84m from 177.73m in SNDD022.
“We are delighted with the visual results we are seeing so far from our diamond drill programme at Saints, particularly those intersections of massive nickel sulphides in holes SNDD021 and SNDD022 which have shown that mineralisation is actually continuous right through what was previously interpreted to be a gap in the Saint Patricks Resource,” Auroch MD Aidan Platel said.
Infill drill-holes at Saint Patricks and Saint Andrews have also successfully intersected disseminated, matrix and massive nickel sulphides at depths consistent with the existing resource model.
That’s good news, confirming the credible and robust nature of that model as Auroch prepares a scoping study on the economics of the Saints project at a time when nickel prices are beginning to soar.
Tensions between Ukraine – and Russia – the world’s largest producer of nickel sulphides, sent prices to 11 year highs of over US$25,000/t yesterday.
Auroch is keen to update its resource to a predominately indicated one, the kind of deposit you can turn into mineable ore reserves.
All up, seven diamond drill holes have been completed for 1813m of drilling, including two holes for met-test work and a third metallurgical hole is being drilled.
“The nickel sulphides intersected in the infill drilling has been consistent with our current model which confirms our existing resource estimation and bodes well for the planned upgrade to the Saints Resource, which will underpin the Scoping Study that is ongoing,” Platel said.
“We also now have the bulk samples we require to commence the all-important metallurgical testwork for the Saints nickel sulphide mineralisation, so everything is coming together and really looking good as we progress our Saints Scoping Study towards completion in the June quarter.”
Auroch, which also owns the historic Nepean nickel mine west of Kalgoorlie, will wrap up the Saints diamond program over the next three weeks.
Showing the depth of its roster, it will mobilise the drill rig to the Leinster project, to test priority targets identified in a technical review of data at the Horn, Woodwind and Brass prospects.
This article was developed in collaboration with Auroch Minerals, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.