• Marmota is set to explore drilling right next to Petratherm’s major rare earths discovery in the Northern Gawler Craton, SA
  • It was the first time significant rare earths have been discovered in the area
  • The biggest intersections were found by Petratherm right on Marmota tenements boundary


Marmota (ASX:MEU)‘s share price was up 13% this morning after announcing a new exploration program for Rare Earth Elements (REE) right next to the major discovery announced by Petratherm (ASX:PTR) last week.

Shares in PTR went ballistic when it announced a major rare earth discovery directly on the border with Marmota’s tenements at the Comet Project, within the Northern Grawler Craton of South Australia. It was the first time that significant REEs have been discovered in the Northern Gawler Craton.

Petratherm said the largest and most exceptional of its high-value magnet REE results were right on the Marmota tenement boundary.

Significantly, the intersections were very close to surface, just 12m from surface in ionic clays. This means large areas of ground can be tested quickly, and any deposits defined would potentially have low exploration and mining costs, MEU says.


Fertile for rare earths

Petratherm carried out a program of 993 shallow RAB holes (typically only 15m deep), of which 44 were subjected to full-suite REE analysis. All 44 holes returned strong results with 23 holes hitting TREO > 1,000ppm.

Petratherm described these intersections as similar in characteristics and grades to ion-absorption rare earth deposits of China – a major world supplier. It also believed the discovery to be ‘regionally extensive, extending several kilometres’.

Petratherm’s sampling stopped at the Marmota tenement boundary, where some of the highest rare earth intersections occurred.

For example: Hole 590: 3m @ 2701 ppm TREO, located right next to Marmota’s boundary, yielded the highest of the exceptional high-value magnet results.

In its release, Petratherm noted that the discovery has redefined the mineral prospectivity of the Northern Gawler Craton, and “provided evidence that the area is fertile for ionic clay hosted rare earth mineralisation.”

“There is substantial upside potential for additional new REE discoveries to be made in the surrounding un-explored tenure,” the PTR’s release said.


Drill targets for Marmota

As the largest tenure holder in the Northern Gawler Craton,

Marmota believes that it would be geologically highly likely that the regional ionic clay mineralisation continues across the tenement boundary, particularly with the best result being located on the tenement boundary.

As such, the company is now already requesting the necessary approvals to carry out drilling work on the two boundary areas where significant intersections were made.

They are : Petratherm’s Hole 590 area on the boundary of Marmota EL 6040, and Petratherm’s Area 2 adjacent to Marmota EL 6083.



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