Chalice Gold Mines’ (ASX:CHN) Julimar nickel-copper-platinum group element (PGE) discovery near Perth, WA, has been the subject of much attention given the thick and high-grade results that drilling has returned to date.

It should come as little surprise then that the company would seek to expand its footprint in the new West Yilgarn province that was marked by the discovery of Julimar.

Chalice has now executed an option to earn up to a 70 per cent interest in the South West nickel-copper project, which the company says hosts a “Julimar lookalike” target, from Venture Minerals (ASX:VMS).

The South West project is 240km south of Perth and also sits near the highly prospective western margin of the Yilgarn Craton.

While it is seen as highly prospective for nickel sulphides and other associated metals, historical exploration has been limited and typically focused on a volcanogenic massive sulphide deposit model.

The Thor target is a 20km-long interpreted mafic-ultramafic complex with a strong magnetic and massive sulphide occurrence with characteristics similar to that of the Julimar Complex, Chalice says.

Limited diamond drilling by Venture intersected a narrow interval of massive sulphides with strongly anomalous nickel, copper and cobalt grades, as well as prospective ultramafic host rocks.

“The Thor target within the South West project looks remarkably similar to the Julimar Complex in terms of its geophysical signature, scale and geology; providing an exciting new discovery opportunity,” managing director Alex Dorsch said.

Chalice can earn a 51 per cent interest in South West by spending $1.2m on exploration within two years including a minimum of $300,000 in the first year.

This can be increased to 70 per cent by spending a further $2.5m on exploration over the following two years.


Not all the money is going into gold

While gold players have been remarkably successful in raising capital thanks to high gold prices, copper has also been running pretty strongly with prices hitting a two-year high last week.

And this has proven beneficial for Eagle Mountain Mining (ASX:EM2), which has secured firm commitments to raise $3m through a share placement priced at 13c each.

This was strongly supported by Australian and European institutional investors and proceeds will be used to carry out drilling at the company’s Oracle Ridge copper project in Arizona.

Eagle Mountain is targeting extensions to high-grade portions of the existing resource of 11.7 million tonnes grading 1.57 per cent copper, 0.18 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 17.47g/t silver.

Previous drilling returned notable intersections of 18.3m at 2.84 per cent copper, 0.42g/t gold and 24.8g/t silver as well as 7.7m at 5.11 per cent copper, 0.72g/t gold and 55.8g/t silver.

Meanwhile, New World Resources (ASX:NWC) has made its widest sulphide intercept to date at the Antler copper project in Arizona.

The latest drill hole intersected 16m of continuous mineralisation including multiple zones of massive and semi-massive sulphides.

The hole is also the deepest that the company has drilled, with the mineralised interval occurring 40m down-dip from the massive sulphide mineralisation intersected in the previous deepest hole and 225m down-dip of the deepest level of historical stoping.

Assays are pending for the seven holes drilled so far in the current program, all of which intersected massive sulphide mineralisation.

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