Podium Minerals says a key heritage clearance could unlock access to a potential high-grade section of its Parks Reef orebody, a platinum group elements find that could become key to the green energy transition.

The explorer has now received all approvals to begin drilling in an untested 800m section demonstrating the potential for high grade ore zones after being granted access via a section 18 heritage application in April, and a program of work with WA’s mines department this month.

Drill pad preparations have begun, with drilling expected to start next week and consist of 12 holes over an 800m strike to test the continuity of the central section of the large PGM reef.

Metals for the energy transition

Podium Minerals (ASX:POD) already boasts an inferred mineral resource estimate of 2.8Moz of 5E at Parks Reef in WA’s Mid-West, including high value metals palladium, platinum, iridium, rhodium and gold with copper and nickel credits.

Holes next to the approved zone contain PGM grades higher than the current resource estimate, including one hit of 7m at more than 6g/t 5E.

Palladium and platinum are essential metals for global decarbonisation, used in autocatalysts to reduce car emissions and as key components in the electrolysers used to produce green hydrogen from water and renewable energy.

“We are excited to drill our orebody in this 800m central zone of the Reef, with adjacent drill holes highlighting prospective high-grade areas that we look forward to testing fully,” Podium managing director Sam Rodda says.

“Additionally, these approvals also enable us to expand and test the resource at depth with the opportunity to add further 5E PGM ounces to the project, as we continue to build our critical minerals PGM resource which seeks to support the reduction of automobile emissions and the green hydrogen transition.”

Rodda says the company plans to work closely with the Yamatji traditional owners at Parks Reef to protect Aboriginal heritage and artefacts.

“Podium is grateful for the strong relationship with and support of the Native Title holders, the Yamatji People of the Murchison region, who have enabled our approvals for access to the heritage area to progress expeditiously,” he said.

“Podium continues to work closely with the traditional owners to ensure the protection of any significant location or artefact that the Project may encounter.”

Podium says it will engage cultural heritage monitors and traditional owners to minimise ground disturbance in the heritage area in line with the agreed approvals.

Assays on the way

Exploration at Parks Reef is currently targeting resources at more than 200m below surface to chase an exploration target of 70-75Mt at 1.2-1.6g/t 3E PGM for 2.7-3.8Moz.

That number if proven up in JORC resources would come on top of the already substantial 2.8Moz resource last updated in February.

Podium is waiting on assay results from 11 holes from its 22 hole Stage 9 program while 44 holes of its 9400m Stage 10 RC drilling campaign have been sent to labs for assaying.

Results are expected in June from the first lot of core sent to Perth for sample testing, while the company is also waiting on the mobilisation of a diamond core rig to complete diamond tails on 12 RC holes that stopped short of the reef target due to low drill productivity of RC drilling through localised clay zones.

“These two drill programmes aim to strongly inform future studies and deliver on the significant exploration target, which will then allow the project team to consider various options around processing routes, mining methods and production volumes,” Podium says.



This article was developed in collaboration with Podium 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.