Blackstone grows Ban Chang bulk underground mining potential
Link copied to
Special Report: The potential for bulk underground mining at the Ban Chang prospect has been improved with Blackstone making a new 15.4m intersection of nickel sulphide mineralisation.
All four maiden holes at the Ban Chang prospect in northern Vietnam have intersected massive nickel sulphide over a 1.2km strike within a 1.2km long massive sulphide target zone that was defined by high priority electromagnetic plates.
Blackstone Minerals (ASX:BSX) managing director Scott Williamson says the latest intersection adds to the potential for bulk underground mining at Ban Chang to supplement possible open pit mining at the Ban Phuc disseminated sulphide orebody
“We look forward to further results from Ban Chang and the King Cobra discovery zone at Ban Phuc,” he added.
“The results will enable us to better understand the full potential of this nickel sulphide district which includes a further 24 massive sulphide vein (MSV) targets analogous to Ban Chang and the successfully mined Ban Phuc massive sulphide underground mine.”
Blackstone has already received assays of 5.2m at 0.66 per cent nickel, 0.73 per cent copper, 0.04 per cent cobalt and 0.79 grams per tonne (g/t) platinum group elements (PGE) including 2.98 per cent nickel, 1.22 per cent copper, 0.18 per cent cobalt and 3.43g/t PGE from the first hole at Ban Chang.
Assays are still pending for the remaining three holes.
The company’s intersection of massive sulphides within metres of modelled electromagnetic (EM) plates also bodes well for its plans to use of EM to unlock the world-class magmatic nickel sulphide geology throughout the Ta Khoa project.
Its regional drilling program is testing EM targets generated from 25 MSV prospects.
This program is aimed at finding MSV deposits analogous to the Ban Phuc MSV that produced 975,000 tonnes of ore grading 2.4 per cent nickel and 1 per cent copper for previous owners from an average vein width of just 1.3m.
Blackstone’s scoping study on downstream processing to produce nickel sulphide for the lithium-ion battery industry and a Ban Phuc maiden resource are on track for completion in the third quarter.
The downstream processing plans are supported by a $6.8m investment from South Korea’s largest electric vehicle battery cathode manufacturer, Ecopro BM.
>> Now watch: RockTalk: Is this a new dawn for nickel?