A review of Future Metals’ flagship Panton platinum group metals-nickel project in WA’s north has revealed several new sulphide-rich targets outside the known mineralised zone.

The exploration targets defined by Future (ASX:FME) are prospective for nickel, copper, gold, cobalt and PGMs, and identified during a detailed review of existing geological data by nickel-copper-PGE expert Jon Hronsky from Western Mining Services.

They sit entirely outside Panton’s existing mineral resource estimate of 6.9 million ounces of palladium equivalent (PdEq), within an area known as the lower zone.

That means the company could be onto something far greater than the already significant mineralisation defined at the project’s main zone.

A review of historic drill data for zones where there was geological evidence of increased sulphide mineralisation revealed high-grade intercepts, including one hit of 19m at 0.51 grams per tonne PGM, 0.59% nickel, 0.28% copper and 0.022% cobalt from 82m.

Numerous late-time airborne electromagnetic (EM) conductors were also identified.

These add credence to notable new and historic intercepts taken from recent drilling at the lower zone’s northern anomaly which included extensive and wide mineralisation outside the mineral resource area, with some recorded from surface.

This included:

  • 522m at 0.94g/t PdEq from 100m; 166.4m at 0.92g/t PdEq from 2m
  • 120m at 1.12g/t PdEq and 108m at 1.13g/t PdEq, both from surface, and;
  • 122.9m at 1.07g/t PdEq from 121m.

Future Metals MD and CEO Jardee Kininmonth said the company was excited to follow up on the targets.

“The prospectivity review has highlighted the exciting exploration potential at Panton, with possible high-grade zones of base metal and gold sulphides outside of the main zone associated with one or multiple feeder (or conduit) zones to the intrusion,” Future Metals MD and CEO Jardee Kininmonth said.

“To date exploration at Panton beyond the PGMs in the chromite reefs has been limited, and this review shows that there is more at play at Panton than our already significant PGM deposit.”

The main zone’s mineralisation is typically reef-style, while the lower zone is contact-style, and the company is planning follow up ground-based EM and gravity surveys to get a better grasp of its targets, with a view to carry out diamond drilling and downhole EM.

Scoping study underway

While pushing ahead with exploration work which could grow the mineralisation at Panton, Future Metals is also preparing a scoping study on the existing mineral resource estimate.

The study will assess different development scenarios for the East Kimberley project, and FME aims to release an update on the study to the market by the end of 2022.

“The planned exploration activities offer significant upside to what is an already compelling high grade, large PGM project,” Kininmonth said.

“Scoping study activities have commenced to assess the different development pathways that may be progressed on Panton’s significant MRE.

“Exploration activities will be run in parallel to the study, with any further discoveries of highly mineralised zones clearly being complementary to the existing orebody.”




This article was developed in collaboration with Future Metals, 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.