While Kincora Copper is hard at work advancing its numerous copper-gold targets at its brownfields Trundle project, mining tech expert Earth AI is doing the heavy lifting at the Cundumbul project. 

Kincora Copper’s (ASX:KCC) exploration partner, Earth AI, has started reconnaissance work at the Cundumbul project, which is strategically located in Australia’s foremost porphyry region – the Macquarie Arc in NSW’s popular Lachlan Fold Belt (LFB).

The project sits in the world-class Molong belt, 30km south of Alkane Resources’ (ASX:ALK) 14.8Moz Northern Molong Porphyry project and 70km north of Newcrest Mining’s (ASX:NCM) flagship +90Moz Cadia mine.

Kincora Copper ASX KCC

The pair announced the success based partnership in October last year, with Earth AI agreeing to spend up to $4.5m over two years to generate and drill test prospective targets at the Cundumbul project.

The upside for Kincora is that it doesn’t have to spend a cent on the project over the next two years, with potential to extend that agreement for another year if Earth AI likes what it sees.

Earth AI saw an opportunity to tap into the $450bn technology metals market, of which copper is a key metal for electrification, to help fast track big discoveries and speed up the clean energy transition.

The company’s vertically integrated, proprietary cloud computing and integrated geological artificial Intelligence (AI) review and machine learning process is designed to be 50x more accurate and half the cost of other exploration methods.

The prize for Earth AI upon making a new discovery, and the completion of at least 1500m of diamond drilling, is an up to 3% net smelter royalty on an agreed area surrounding the discovery.

“As Kincora focuses on drill testing our existing 13 copper-gold discovery opportunities within our NSW project pipeline it is pleasing to see Earth AI in the field at the Cundumbul project,” CEO Sam Spring told investors today.

“Earth AI has applied its proprietary cloud-based AI and machine learning technology to generate targets which are now being field checked by their senior geological team.

“This reconnaissance work program will assist, confirm and refine target assessment ahead of a planned drilling program utilising their in-house diamond drill rig that is based in Young, NSW.”

Previous exploration at Cundumbul included mapping, soil sampling, rock chip sampling, induced polarisation, gravity, and magnetic geophysical surveying, with more limited follow-up auger, reverse circulation, and diamond drilling.

Mineralised monzonitic intrusions have been identified at both the Bell and Andrews prospects, in the north and south respectively of the project, located over 10km apart.

Exploration efforts were last lead by Mitsubishi Materials Corporation during an earn-in period that ended in 2015.

Bell, the most advanced prospect, has witnessed both reverse circulation and diamond drilling, which intersected high-grade molybdenum in multiple holes, returning a top hit of 4m at 0.17% from 168m.

Molybdenum prices hit 17-year highs earlier this year, with the commodity produced as a by-product of porphyry copper mining, another part of the market witnessing huge gains on optimism over a post-Covid recovery in China – the world’s largest copper consumer.

Global production of molybdenum is usually around 300,000t per year, primarily destined for the steel industry and used in things like engineering steels, superalloys, chemical compounds, and lubricants.

And, like copper, there isn’t enough supply to keep up with the growing demand, making this an interesting one to watch for Kincora.

“We are keen to see these targets advance and benefit from Earth AI’s proprietary exploration approach which seeks to improve the success rate and lead time to make the discovery of new deposits needed to support the electric vehicle and renewable energy revolutions,” Spring said.




This article was developed in collaboration with Kincora Copper, 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.