MTM’s first pass aircore drilling has proven to be remarkably successful with the discovery laterite nickel at the Seahorse prospect within its East Laverton project in WA’s Eastern Goldfields region.

Nickel-cobalt-chromite mineralisation has been confirmed over a 1km strike length with drilling returning assays such as 28m grading 0.95% nickel, 10m at 0.1% cobalt and 21m at 0.97% chromium in hole 23ELAC176 and 28m at 0.97% nickel and 32m at 1.08% chromium in hole 23ELAC185.

The drilling also returned includes numerous samples with greater than 1% nickel and a top 1m interval of 2.2% nickel.

MTM Critical Metals (ASX:MTM) notes the host ultramafic unit has never been tested by drilling and is open along strike, which is potentially very lucrative for the company given that magnetics and geochemistry has indicated that the prospective rocks extend over a strike of more than 3km.

And all that is without taking into account the intersection of rare earths mineralisation grading up to 1,850 parts per million (ppm) total rare earth oxides (TREO), which is well within the range of REE intercepts encountered elsewhere in the East Laverton project.

Successful result

“This discovery of lateritic nickel mineralisation is the successful result of MTM’s systematic exploration campaign at the Seahorse prospect over the past two years,” managing director Lachlan Reynolds said.

“Prior to our work, there has been limited historical exploration in this area, which is mostly covered by transported sediments and marginal to the greenstone belts that are traditionally considered to be most prospective.

“However, our combined soil sampling program and interpretation of the regional geophysical surveys has identified numerous anomalies, which this drilling confirms can be associated with mineralisation developed in the laterite profile developed over prospective rocks.”

He added that not only were the nickel grades and widths intersected at this stage very encouraging, only part of the strike length of the interpreted ultramafic unit has been tested with drilling to date, granting considerable potential for a large resource to be delineated.

“We are also keen to evaluate the potential for sulphide-hosted nickel mineralisation associated with the ultramafic units and are considering what ground geophysical survey types may be appropriate to undertake to define new drilling targets,” he noted.

Seahorse prospect

Seahorse is located about 50km southeast of the town of Laverton and 100km east from Glencore’s Murrin Murrin nickel mine.

It is considered prospective for a range of commodities, including nickel, cobalt, REE, gold and base metals based on limited historical exploration results.

Broad soil geochemical sampling by the company over the western part of Seahorse in 2022 had identified significant nickel anomalies that were interpreted to be associated with ultramafic lithologies in the basement.

Subsequent field checking of the nickel anomalies identified a possible gossan at the Seahorse target whilst rock chip sampling confirmed the potential for nickel mineralisation.

Upcoming activity

Besides awaiting the receipt of further drill assays at Seahorse, MTM is now considering a further program of infill and extensional drilling to define the extent of the nickel laterite mineralisation and determine if it contains potential for a nickel-cobalt resource.

Additional geochemical sampling surveys are planned to the west and south of the known anomaly to assist with the definition of additional targets in the area.

The company added that the potential for nickel sulphide associated with the ultramafic unit that hosts the laterite mineralisation remains unknown.

As such, a suitable ground-based electromagnetic survey might be carried out to determine if there are any significant conductors along the strike of the ultramafic unit, which could be indicative of deeper sulphide drilling targets.




This article was developed in collaboration with MTM Critical 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.